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Louisiana Supreme Court rejects appeal in abortion case, letting state ban take effect

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The Louisiana Supreme Court on Friday denied an appeal from plaintiffs challenging the state's abortion ban, allowing the ban to remain in effect.

According to a statement from Pro-Life Louisiana, the court denied an appeal filed by the Center for Reproductive Rights on behalf of June Medical Services, which operates Hope Medical Group for Women, an abortion provider located in Shreveport.

“We are thankful that babies in Louisiana will continue to be protected from abortion while the abortion industry’s frivolous lawsuit plays out in court," Executive Director of Louisiana Right to Life Benjamin Clapper said. "Their lawsuit is disrespectful to our citizens and legislators who have made it clear for decades that we value life in the womb. “

Pro-choice advocates and abortion providers were hardest hit by the court's decision, as the state's three abortion clinics will not be allowed to continue operations so long as they perform abortions.

“While it is disappointing that four of the seven justices, without any written explanation, issued a ruling that will effectively deny critical care to women throughout Louisiana, the litigation continues and we are confident we can affect (sic) meaningful change,” attorney for the plaintiffs Joanna Wright said in a statement after the ruling, according to the Associated Press.

The ruling was celebrated by Louisiana Attorney General Jeff Landry, a defendant in the case, who promised in a tweet to "continue fighting to end this legal circus."

Louisiana's abortion "trigger law" took a tumultuous journey through state courts before going into effect. The law does not provide an exception for rape or incest but does include exceptions for medical emergencies threatening the life of the mother.

After the U.S. Supreme Court ended constitutional protections for abortion rights in June, Louisiana abortion clinics sued to continue their operations, arguing the law was vague and violates the state constitution.

A New Orleans judge blocked the law from taking effect on June 17, but it went back into effect on July 8 when a different judge transferred the case to Baton Rouge.

Then on July 21, state Judge Donald Johnson blocked enforcement of the abortion ban while the case played out in court. However, Louisiana Attorney General Jeff Landry appealed Johnson's ruling eight days later, winning in appeals court and putting the law back into effect.

Now, the abortion clinics have had their appeal rejected by the Louisiana Supreme Court, permitting the law to remain in effect.

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