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Abortion

  • Five people are at the center of a federal lawsuit claiming violations of the Freedom of Access to Clinic Entrances Act, which prohibits using force, threats of force or physical obstruction against any person because they are seeking or providing reproductive health services.The Justice Department filed the suit Thursday in the Middle District of Florida against five people for violating the FACE Act.
  • The state has appealed a Leon County circuit judge’s decision requiring changes to a “financial impact statement” that will appear on the November ballot with a proposed constitutional amendment aimed at ensuring abortion rights.After announcing his decision during a hearing last week, Circuit Judge John Cooper on Monday issued a written ruling that said outdated information in the financial impact statement “renders it inaccurate, ambiguous, misleading, unclear and confusing.”
  • Florida abortion providers and activists are girding for a law that will take effect Wednesday and prevent abortions after six weeks of pregnancy, severely limiting access to abortion for women in the state and across the Southeast.While providers rushed to see as many patients as possible before Wednesday, abortion-rights supporters also were bolstering efforts to help women travel out-of-state to obtain the procedure.
  • In a 12-minute address at Hillsborough Community College, Biden warned of "extreme" laws that restrict abortion access, and he blamed Trump, his predecessor and presumptive 2024 rival, for making those policies possible.
  • Florida’s Supreme Court recently ruled that the state’s constitution does not protect abortion, allowing the state law passed in 2023 that bans abortion after six weeks to take effect next month. But in a separate decision, the Florida Supreme Court also just ruled that an amendment to guarantee abortion rights in the state’s constitution can go on the November ballot. As all of this unfolds we listen back to a conversation from 2021 when the first modern bill to restrict abortions in Florida was filed, to get a big picture history of the legality, and criminality, of abortion in America.
  • The Florida Supreme Court on Monday upheld the state’s ban on most abortions after 15 weeks of pregnancy, which means a subsequently passed six-week ban can soon take effect.The court that was reshaped by former presidential candidate and Republican Gov. Ron DeSantis ruled that the 15-week ban signed by DeSantis in 2022 can take effect. The ban has been enforced while it was being challenged in court. A six-week ban passed in the 2023 legislative session was written so that it would not take effect until a month after the 2022 law was upheld.The Court also ruled that the proposed constitutional amendment that would enshrine abortion access will be on the state’s November ballot.
  • Lee County's National Organization for Woman chapter is raising concerns over a piece of legislation sponsored by a Fort Myers Republican state representative.A House committee on Wednesday approved controversial HB 651 that would allow parents to file civil lawsuits seeking damages for the wrongful death of an “unborn child,” with critics of the bill saying it is too broad and could shrink the number of doctors who deliver babies in Florida.It now moves to the full House for approval.
  • The Florida Supreme Court heard oral arguments Wednesday to decide whether a proposed state constitutional amendment aimed at protecting abortion rights will be on the ballot this year.The amendment asks Florida voters to “limit government interference with abortion” before a fetus is considered viable, which is at about 24 weeks of pregnancy. It reads in part, “No law shall prohibit, penalize, delay, or restrict abortion before viability or when necessary to protect the patient’s health, as determined by the patient’s healthcare provider.”
  • A Sarasota-based organization promoting an abortion amendment for the 2024 Florida General Election ballot says it has received notice from the state that the issue will be on the ballot this year as Amendment 4, pending Florida Supreme Court review.Floridians Protecting Freedom issued a media release Friday that said it had received notification on the issue from the Florida Division of Elections.However, that notification isn't a guarantee. The amendment language was submitted for review to the Supreme Court last year by the state attorney general and a hearing is scheduled in February to hear arguments.
  • As previously reported in an ongoing Florida Trident investigative series, the state’s Florida Pregnancy Support Services Program, which provides taxpayers’ money to more than 100 anti-abortion “crisis pregnancy centers (CPCs)” around the state, including Grace House, are Christian-based organizations and often identify themselves as “ministries” and “missions.” Several legal experts have said the program runs afoul of the U.S. and Florida constitutions, the latter of which expressly forbids the state from aiding religious organizations. The stated goal of the program is to convince clients to carry their pregnancies to term rather than having abortions.Despite its inherent problems, the program is now bursting at the seams in Florida. Its annual budget has ballooned from $4 million to $25 million a year, an increase written into the controversial six-week abortion ban legislation signed by Gov. Ron DeSantis in April.