Tuesday, September 28, 2021

UPDATE: Brnovich Appeals, Asks District Court and 9th Circuit To Allow Arizona Ban On Abortions Due To Genetic Abnormalities To Go Into Effect (READ Filings)

UPDATE, 1018, 6pm: Judge Refuses Request To Allow Arizona  Anti-Abortion Law To Go Into Effect Pending Appeal; Brnovich "Misconstruing" Court's Decision

As expected, federal Judge Douglas Rayes tonight DENIED a request by Arizona Attorney General Mark Brnovich to allow Arizona's new anti-abortion law to go into effect while an appeal is pending.

The state's "abstract injury is outweighed by the real-world harms a stay would visit upon the provider Plaintiffs and their patients," Judge Rayes bluntly stated in denying the stay. The portion of the law would prohibit abortions sought solely because of a genetic abnormality in the fetus.

UPDATE, 10/6, 3:45pm: Brnovich Appeals, Asks District Court and 9th Circuit To Allow Arizona Ban On Abortions Due To Genetic Abnormalities To Go Into Effect (READ Filings)

As expected, the state of Arizona is appealing an injunction against a new law that would prohibit abortions sought solely because of a genetic abnormality. Attorney General Mark Brnovich is also asking the District Court judge to allow the law to go into effect while the case is before the 9th Circuit as an "emergency".

U.S. District Court Judge Douglas Rayes is unlikely to agree to stay his injunction pending appeal, and today gave the Plaintiffs until October 13 to respond to the motion.

Brnovich argues that the Legislature intended “'to send an unambiguous message that children with genetic abnormalities, whether born or unborn, are equal in dignity and value to their peers without genetic abnormalities, born or unborn.' While the law is enjoined, doctors can continue performing abortions knowing that the abortion is sought solely because of a genetic abnormality. This certainly constitutes irreparable harm."

The Plaintiffs have not filed their own appeal of Rayes' decision to not block the "personhood" provision in the new law, and based on comments from Plaintiffs' attorney Emily Nestler, they will probably decide to continue fighting that at the trial court level (rather than appealing the denial of an injunction against it).

Original article, 9/28: BREAKING: Judge Refuses To Block Arizona Anti-Abortion "Personhood" Provision From Going Into Effect Tomorrow; DOES BLOCK Prohibition On Abortion Due To Genetic Abnormality (READ Order)

In an Order that will further enrage - and, make happy - both sides in a fierce abortion debate, a federal judge this afternoon allowed a key part of a new Arizona anti-abortion law to go into effect tomorrow, while preventing a prohibition on abortions sought because of a "genetic abnormality" from taking effect.


Appeals and cross-appeals from Judge Douglas Rayes' 30-page decision are likely to be filed quickly with the 9th Circuit, along with requests for stays.

In the argument over abortions based on "genetic abnormality", Rayes sided with the doctor-plaintiffs who said it would harm the doctor-patient relationship.

If a woman wishes to terminate her pre-viability pregnancy because of a fetal genetic abnormality, the Reason Regulations require her to conceal this information from or lie to her doctor, neither of which fosters trust or encourages open dialogue. Arizona’s more abstract concern with how the public might perceive the medical profession does not outweigh the concrete damage that the Reason Regulations would do to the doctor-patient relationship.

 In denying the injunction for the "personhood" provision, Rayes cited the U.S. Supreme Court's 1989 decision in Webster v. Reproductive Health Services.


"AZ Law" includes articles, commentaries and updates about opinions from the Arizona Supreme Court, U.S. Supreme Court, as well as trial and appellate courts, etc. AZ Law is founded by Phoenix attorney Paul Weich, and joins Arizona's Politics on the internet. 

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