Court affirms order blocking Indiana ultrasound abortion law

(Photo by Joe Raedle/Getty Images)

INDIANAPOLIS — A federal appeals court has upheld a ruling that blocks an Indiana mandate forcing women to undergo an ultrasound at least 18 hours before having an abortion.

The 7th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals on Wednesday affirmed a preliminary injunction issued in April 2017 by U.S. District Judge Tanya Walton Pratt. The injunction blocked the ultrasound waiting period that then-Indiana Gov. Mike Pence signed in March 2016.

Appeals Court Judge Ilana Rovner wrote in Wednesday’s ruling that the law “constitutes an undue burden” on women seeking abortions because it requires some of them to face additional long-distance travel and additional expenses.

The American Civil Liberties Union of Indiana’s executive director says the ruling “affirms that deeply personal decisions about abortion should be made by women in consultation with their doctors.”