First, the goodish news: ultrasounds don’t actually do shit to coerce women not to have abortions, they’re just a stupid hassle. From the American Independent:
But as more states inject mandatory ultrasound policies into their abortion laws, a group of scientists is attempting to influence the debate with new research showing that ultrasounds, while useful and informative, do not directly influence a woman’s decision to have an abortion, at least not in most cases. The research team has also found evidence of instances when anti-abortion pregnancy centers have misdiagnosed how far along a woman is in her pregnancy, potentially in an effort to delay or prevent an abortion.
A federal judge in Austin said Monday that he couldn’t block a Texas law requiring women to have a sonogram before having an abortion any longer because an appeals court had ordered it to take effect.
District Judge Sam Sparks earlier ruled parts of the law unconstitutional, but his latest ruling said he’s bound to follow the direction of the New Orleans-based appeals court, which said last month it believed the law to be constitutional.
Sparks wrote in his ruling that the law is still some bullshit. I’m paraphrasing, via the Austin-American Statesman:
Sparks wrote that he remained convinced that the law violates the U.S. Constitution by infringing on doctor’s free speech rights and by impairing the exercise of their medical judgment.
But Sparks added that his hands were tied by a higher-court decision, issued last month by a three-judge panel of the 5th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals, that expressly found the sonogram requirement to be constitutionally sound and a reasonable regulation of medicine.