AUL's Arizona 20-week Abortion Limit Starts Work Thursday, Aug. 2

"The truth that abortion is harmful to women is an important reason these protections remain in place," said AUL's Dr. Charmaine Yoest. "Beginning August 2, AUL's model legislation can go to work in Arizona protecting both the unborn and women’s health."

WASHINGTON, D.C. -- A federal district court this week upheld Arizona’s ban on abortions at 20 weeks gestation—legislation that was based on AUL’s model language.  In upholding the ban, the Court emphasized medical findings contained in AUL’s language, including information on the fact that after 20 weeks of pregnancy the risks of abortion increase dramatically for women. AUL President and CEO Dr. Charmaine Yoest noted that the health risks of abortion to women and girls makes AUL's model legislation a unique effort to protect the long-term health and safety of women, in addition to protecting the unborn. 

"Most people are unaware that the United States is one of four nations out of 195 that allows abortions through all 9 months of pregnancy for any reason—joining China, North Korea, and Canada," said Dr. Yoest. "AUL's 20-week abortion limitation puts the health risks of the late-term procedure front and center and shows real concern for women and their unborn children."

As part of AUL's legislative efforts, AUL Senior Counsel Clarke Forsythe testified before a legislative committee on behalf of the bill.

"We're very pleased that a U.S. District Court Judge in Phoenix rejected the abortion industry's challenge to Arizona's 20-week abortion limitation,"  said Forsythe. "Equally important, the judge quoted the findings made by the Arizona legislature based on AUL testimony and evidence compiled by AUL's attorneys on the health risks to women when having a late-term abortion procedure after 20 weeks."

Up next: The abortion industry has announced plans to file an emergency appeal to the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit to try, once again, to defeat this legislation—showcasing their lack of concern for the very real health risks of abortion for women.

Dr. Yoest observed: "Since ten states (including Arizona) have enacted a prohibition on abortion after 20 weeks following the Supreme Court's 2007 decision in Gonzales v. Carhart, this becomes an important test case. We hope that the Supreme Court will ultimately apply its maternal health-focused reasoning in Gonzales to uphold these important health and safety laws."

For more on AUL's pro-woman and pro-child model legislation, click here.

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Americans United for Life (AUL) is a nonprofit, public-interest law and policy organization whose vision is a nation in which everyone is welcomed in life and protected in law. The first national pro-life organization in America, AUL has been committed to defending human life through vigorous judicial, legislative, and educational efforts at both the federal and state levels since 1971.

AUL's legal team has been involved in every abortion-related case before the U.S. Supreme Court including the successful defense of the Hyde Amendment. AUL also publishes Defending Life, the most comprehensive state-by-state legal guide of its kind, which is distributed annually to legislators across the nation.

Recently, Americans United for Life detailed the facts on taxpayer-funding of abortion during the debate over federal health care legislation, provided legal assistance to states working to opt out of abortion provisions created by federal health care law, and has played a major role in educating policymakers on the record of President Obama’s then-nominees to the U.S. Supreme Court.