McCormack filed suit and persuaded U.S. District Judge B. Lynn Winmill to issue a preliminary injunction preventing the county from bringing any new charge, against her or others, until the constitutionality of the law is resolved in federal court.
McCormack's lawyer, Richard Hearn — who happens to be a doctor — has taken the unusual step of entering the case as a plaintiff himself, a tactic he hopes will allow him to also challenge the "fetal pain" law and other statutes that might hold doctors criminally liable for prescribing abortion drugs.
"It doesn't do women any good to have a right to get an abortion if a state can punish any doctor who does it," Hearn said. "If there are doctors who will prescribe these pills in California, let the women in Idaho utilize them without having to fly to Los Angeles, because a lot of women like Jennie can't afford to go where those providers are."
The state attorney general's office earlier this year told the Legislature that the fetal pain law might not pass constitutional muster, but the state argues that it has the right to require that abortions be conducted by state-licensed physicians in safe settings.