Judge strikes down Kentucky law in win for abortion clinic

In a major blow for Kentucky’s Republican governor, a federal judge has struck down a state law requiring abortion clinics to have written agreements with a hospital and an ambulance service in case of medical emergencies.

U.S. District Judge Greg Stivers ruled Friday that the law requiring the so-called transfer agreements violates constitutional protections. 

He stated that the transfer agreements ‘do not advance a legitimate interest’ in promoting the health of women that do seek abortions, CBS News reports. 

‘The court has carefully reviewed the evidence presented in this case and concludes that the record is devoid of any credible proof that the challenged regulations have any tangible benefit to women’s health,’ Stivers added.

‘On the other hand, the regulations effectively eliminate women’s rights to abortions in the state. Therefore, the challenged regulations are unconstitutional.’

The ruling is a victory for Kentucky’s last abortion clinic, the EMW Women’s Surgical Center.

The Louisville clinic argued that Gov. Matt Bevin’s administration used the law to try to shut it down and block its request for a license to provide abortions.

The clinic filed a federal lawsuit to prevent the state from revoking its license. A trial on the suit was held a year ago.

Planned Parenthood in Indiana and in Kentucky joined the suit, saying Bevin’s administration had used the transfer agreements to block its request for a license to provide abortions in Louisville.

Stivers had stated that both EMW and Planned Parenthood used their ‘best efforts’ to find a hospital to do transfer agreements but none would pair with them. The judge felt as a result, it was impossible for them to comply with the standard. 

The American Civil Liberties Union approved the ruling, calling the law ‘an attack on women.’ 

ACLU attorney Brigitte Amiri said: ‘The court’s decision recognized the Kentucky law for what it is: an attack on women wrapped up in a bogus justification and pushed by politicians who’ve been transparent in their pursuit to ban abortion in the state of Kentucky.’ 

Elizabeth Kuhn, Bevin’s spokeswoman, shared that the governments expects to win an appeal for the decision. Bevin is a huge opponent against abortion.     

‘We are disappointed that the court would strike down a statute that protects the health and well-being of Kentucky women,’ Kuhn said.

Read more at DailyMail.co.uk