Arizona Planned Parenthood asks court to pause abortion ban during appeal

By Gloria Rebecca Gomez || Arizona Mirror

Citing confusion for providers and harm to women, Planned Parenthood of Arizona has filed for an immediate stay of last week’s ruling that reinstated a 158-year-old total abortion ban. 

Late Friday afternoon, Pima County Superior Court Judge Kellie Johnson ruled that a 1973 injunction blocking the ban is no longer relevant after Roe v. Wade was overturned in June. The federal protection afforded by the now voided Supreme Court case had been the primary reason for the injunction of the 1864 abortion ban. 

Ahead of an appeal of Judge Johnson’s decision, Planned Parenthood of Arizona is asking for a pause on the ban while the case continues to play out in court. Attorneys for the organization argue that the decision muddled an already confusing legal landscape for abortion providers in Arizona. 

A 15-week abortion ban was passed earlier this year, while Roe was still intact, and was set to go into effect Saturday. Gov. Doug Ducey, who signed the new law, has repeatedly said it should supersede the 1864 ban, but proponents of the preexisting ban argue that the new 15-week limit was never meant to overrule the ban, but rather limit abortion access if Roe was not overturned. Judge Johnson noted that her decision was solely on the validity on the injunction, not on which abortion law applies. 

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