Abortion Law Blocked

On the same day that new state restrictions on abortions and abortion providers took effect in Wisconsin, a federal judge agreed to put a temporary hold on part of the controversial law.


In a ruling issued Monday evening, U.S. District Judge William Conley granted a motion for a temporary restraining order, blocking a requirement that doctors performing an abortion also have admitting privileges at a hospital within 30 miles of the clinic where they work. The order will remain in place at least until a full hearing on the issue is held on July 17.


In his ruling, Judge Conley called the quick action of the law “precipitous,” noting that it went from introduction to passage in the space of just a month. Conley also noted that “there is a troubling lack of justification for the hospital admitting privileges requirement.”


Planned Parenthood Advocates of Wisconsin filed the challenge against the admitting privileges requirement on Friday, the same day that Governor Scott Walker signed the bill into law. The group says the rule will force the closure of its Appleton and one of its Milwaukee clinics. Judge Conley’s order means those clinics will remain open, for the time being.