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NATIONAL
March 14, 2014 | By Michael Muskal
North Dakota and its only abortion clinic have resolved part of their dispute over the state's new abortion law, meaning the facility will remain open. At issue was the requirement that physicians performing abortions have hospital privileges. The state and clinic agreed that doctors at the Red River Women's Clinic would maintain such privileges. The agreement was announced Friday by the state and the Center for Reproductive Rights, which assisted the clinic, located in Fargo.
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NATIONAL
March 14, 2014 | By Joseph Serna
A federal judge has struck down a portion of a law in Arkansas that bans most abortions after 12 weeks of pregnancy, reasoning that the fetus' viability, not heartbeat, determines the legality of such procedures. At issue was an Arkansas law passed last March that said a woman could not receive an abortion beyond 12 weeks if the fetus had a heartbeat, except in cases of rape, incest, if the woman's life was in danger or if the fetus had a highly lethal disorder. U.S. District Judge Susan Webber Wright ruled that viability - or the fetus' ability to survive outside the womb - was the determining factor in abortion law and that Arkansas' law was therefore unconstitutional.
NATIONAL
March 6, 2014 | By Michael Muskal
Two more Texas abortion clinics closed on Thursday because of restrictions in a state law that is being fought in the federal courts. Amy Hagstrom Miller, who owns the Whole Woman's Health Clinic, told reporters on Thursday that Republican lawmakers have made it impossible to keep her clinics open in Beaumont and McAllen. The McAllen clinic is the last in the Rio Grande Valley in southern Texas, and the Beaumont clinic is the only one between Houston and the Louisiana border. The GOP-controlled Texas Legislature last year passed House Bill 2, which limits when, how and from whom women can obtain abortions.
NATIONAL
March 5, 2014 | By Cindy Carcamo
TUCSON -- Abortion providers have filed suit against Arizona to block a new rule that limits the use of medications to induce abortions. The rule is part of state-mandated abortion regulations that are scheduled to take effect April 1. On Wednesday, Planned Parenthood of Arizona and the Tucson's Women's Center announced they had filed a lawsuit challenging the new rule. The groups claim the rule is unconstitutional. Restrictions on similar medication-induced abortions have been enacted in other states and made their way through the courts with mixed results.
NEWS
February 14, 2014 | By Molly Hennessy-Fiske
HOUSTON - Wendy Davis, the Texas gubernatorial candidate who garnered national attention for an 11-hour filibuster last year against state abortion restrictions, this week said she would support certain qualified restrictions. The state senator from Fort Worth said during an appearance in Houston Wednesday that she would not oppose a ban on abortions after 20 weeks of pregnancy, with caveats. A 20-week ban, included in recent abortion laws proposed in other states, was not part of the Texas abortion legislation eventually passed by the Republican-controlled Legislature.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
February 3, 2014 | By Robin Abcarian
Is it good news that the national abortion rate is at its lowest level since 1973, the year it was legalized by the U.S. Supreme Court? Your reaction will depend on two things: how you feel about abortion and the reasons the rate has fallen. Has it dropped because so many states have passed new laws aimed at squeezing abortion clinics out of business, and raising so many obstacles that women seeking abortions will simply give up and go home? Or has it dropped because there are fewer unintended pregnancies?
NATIONAL
February 2, 2014 | By Saba Hamedy
The U.S. abortion rate fell in 2011 to its lowest level since the 1973 Supreme Court decision legalizing the procedure,  Roe vs. Wade , according to a new study. Research by the  Guttmacher Institute , a nonprofit organization that supports abortion rights, found that in 2011 there were 16.9 abortions for every 1,000 women ages 15-44. In 1973, the rate was 16.3 abortions per 1,000 women. In all, there were about 1.1 million abortions in 2011, down 13% from 2008, according to the report, which is to be published in March.
NATIONAL
January 15, 2014 | By David G. Savage
WASHINGTON - In a case pitting free speech against abortion rights, Supreme Court justices signaled Wednesday they were inclined to strike down a Massachusetts law that sets a 35-foot buffer zone to prevent protesters from approaching clinics that offer the procedure. Opponents called the law a violation of free speech and complained it prohibits "peaceful conversation on a public sidewalk," said Mark Rienzi, the attorney representing antiabortion activist Eleanor McCullen, 77, from Boston.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
January 14, 2014 | By Robin Abcarian
On Wednesday, the Supreme Court is due to hear arguments on the constitutionality of a Massachusetts law that requires antiabortion protesters to stay 35 feet from abortion clinic entrances. If any group in America is going to be tormented by this conflict between free speech and abortion rights, it's the country's oldest civil rights organization. And yet, as usual, the American Civil Liberties Union gets it right. The buffer zone law is legal, says the ACLU. On its face, it neither prevents nor suppresses political expression, but rather finds a healthy balance between two seemingly irreconcilable rights.
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