Legal battle ahead for Alabama abortion law

Legal battle ahead for Alabama abortion law
An Alabama law banning most abortions in the state will take effect in six months, but legal challenges are already in the works. (Source: WSFA 12 News)

MONTGOMERY, Ala. (WSFA) - An Alabama law banning most abortions in the state will take effect in six months, but legal challenges are already in the works.

Planned Parenthood and the ACLU have already said their organizations will file suits against the law. According to NBC’s Justice Correspondent Pete Williams, the lawsuits will head to a district court, where a judge, bound by U.S. Supreme Court precedent, will almost certainly declare the new law unconstitutional.

Williams said the law would then go to the U.S. Court of Appeals for the 11th Circuit, which will also more than likely strike it down. Though supporters of the law can ask the Supreme Court to take the case, there is no guarantee it will because the judicial body mostly chooses the cases it hears.

“The odds seem to be against it,” Williams said. “The law may be its own worst enemy because it is a direct attack on Roe v. Wade.”

Williams said the Supreme Court is more likely to take up one of the other cases now pending involving laws that seek to restrict access to abortion, not overturn Roe v. Wade outright. Four votes are needed from the judges to take up a case.

The whole process, Williams said, will likely take two years, and though that’s well after the law is set to take effect, opponents are expected to ask a judge for an immediate order to block the law.

Alabama had to pay $1.7 million after losing a 2013 abortion law court fight.

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