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Oklahoma appeals abortion ultrasound ruling

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The action drew criticism from an abortion-rights group that opposed the law, saying Attorney General Scott Pruitt is continuing an assault on women’s rights and health.

Pruitt two weeks ago appealed another lower court ruling to the state Supreme Court. That law was intended to restrict the off-label use of certain abortion-inducing drugs.

Thursday’s appeal deals with a decision in March by Oklahoma County District Judge Bryan Dixon to declare the ultrasound law unconstitutional in a summary judgment. The law would have required doctors or their technicians to show pregnant women ultrasound images of their fetuses and discuss those images with the women before abortions were performed.

“The attorney general is committed to vigorously defending Oklahoma statutes that enhance and ensure that individuals who make consequential decisions are provided the necessary information for their decision-making process,” said Diane Clay, Pruitt’s spokeswoman. “This statute is about informed consent and education.”

Papers filed with the Supreme Court claim Dixon erred in ruling that the state constitution forbids legislation ensuring women receive “meaningful medical information obtained through ultrasounds that the clinics are currently requiring.”

The GOP-controlled Legislature passed the law, commonly called the Ultrasound Act, in April 2010, overriding a veto by then-Gov. Brad Henry. At the time of his veto, Henry, a Democrat, said he was concerned the law had numerous flaws and would result in an expensive and possibly futile legal battle for the state.

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About the Author:

Paul Khunkhun, serving Southern California since 1998. Paul is the owner of MDIS. He is a Board Certified Ultrasound Sonographer with RDCS and RVT credentialing. He is also pending ICAEL accreditation.

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