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North Carolina abortion ban to take effect after judge blocks single provision

North Carolina's previous law banned abortion after 20 weeks.

Published: June 30, 2023 4:22pm

North Carolina's 12-week abortion ban will take effect on Saturday, after a federal judge declined to fully block its implementation and only halted a requirement that doctors document a pregnancy when prescribing or administering abortion drugs.

U.S. District Judge Catherine Eagles's decision keeps that provision on ice until July 14, The Hill reported. Planned Parenthood had challenged several of the ban's provisions, though the legislature approved last minute updates to the law's language, which Democratic Gov. Roy Cooper signed. Eagles noted that the updates effectively killed some of the organization's challenges to the ban and allowed most of it to take effect.

The law's implementation will end the Old North State's status one of the last remaining southern states with relatively permissive abortion laws. The twelve week gestational limit, however, is still much more permissive than myriad southern states that have either entirely banned the procedure or set the bar at six weeks.

North Carolina's previous law banned abortion after 20 weeks.

South Carolina, meanwhile, has passed a "heartbeat" bill banning abortion after the detection of a fetal heartbeat, which can occur as early 5-6 weeks of pregnancy. That bill, however, is the subject of a judicial hold, meaning the procedure is legal until 22 weeks, according to the Guttmacher Institute.

Ben Whedon is an editor and reporter for Just the News. Follow him on Twitter.

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