Jim Suhr, Associated Press Updated 7:13 pm, Wednesday, April 19, 2017
KANSAS CITY, Mo. (AP) — A federal judge followed through on his promise Wednesday and blocked abortion-restricting rules in Missouri, saying he's bound by a U.S. Supreme Court ruling and that the state is denying abortion rights "on a daily basis, in irreparable fashion."
Missouri's attorney general swiftly pledged an appeal, calling the ruling "wrong."
U.S. District Judge Howard F. Sachs' preliminary injunction came roughly two weeks after he announced in a memo that he would take the action, which was sought by Planned Parenthood affiliates with Missouri health centers. Planned Parenthood last November sued to challenge requirements that doctors who perform abortions have admitting privileges at nearby hospitals and that clinics meet hospital-like standards for outpatient surgery.
Only one licensed abortion clinic remains in the state — a Planned Parenthood center in St. Louis — partly as a result of Missouri's restrictions. The organization has said Planned Parenthood health centers in Kansas City, Columbia, Joplin and Springfield would provide abortions if the restrictions were scrapped.