Federal District Judge rules two Alabama abortion laws unconstitutional

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(AL.com) — U.S. District Judge Myron Thompson on Thursday ruled two Alabama abortion laws are unconstitutional and blocked the state from enforcing them.

One would prohibit the state from licensing or renewing the license of an abortion clinic within 2,000 feet of a K-8 public school. That would close two of Alabama's five abortion clinics, Thompson wrote, and those two clinics perform 72 percent of abortions in the state.

The other law would criminalize the most common method of second-trimester abortion in Alabama, effectively terminating the right to an abortion in Alabama at 15 weeks, Thompson wrote. The method is called dilation and evacuation and is referred to in the Alabama law as dismemberment abortion.

"Because these laws clearly impose an impermissible burden on a woman's ability to choose an abortion, they cannot stand," the judge wrote.

Mike Lewis, spokesman for the Alabama attorney general's office, said the state will appeal the ruling.

Thompson had previously issued an order temporarily blocking enforcement of the laws.

The Legislature passed both laws last year and they were scheduled to take effect August 1 of this year.

More on this story at AL.com.