Federal Judge Delays Enforcement of Alabama Abortion Law
US District Judge Myron Thompson has delayed the implementation of an Alabama law that would severely limit access to abortion services from August 2013 to March 24, 2014. The law, which mandates abortion clinics conform to the same standards as ambulatory care centers and requires doctors to attain admitting privileges at nearby hospitals, would eliminate three out of the five clinics in Alabama currently offering abortion services.
The American Civil Liberties Union and Planned Parenthood have filed a joint lawsuit against the law in an attempt to block the provision that requires doctors have admitting privileges in local hospitals. Currently, the majority of clinics in Alabama have doctors who travel from out of state perform procedures. These doctors partner with local doctors with admitting privileges to provide necessary follow-up care. With the new measure, the doctors themselves must have the admitting privileges. According to the lawsuit, many local hospitals deny these privileges to abortion doctors because the hospital is opposed to abortion or the clinic is too far away according to hospitals standards.
5/5/2015 Sen. Reid Promises to Filibuster "Fast Track" for the TransPacific Partnership - Senate Democratic Leader Harry Reid has promised to delay efforts to push through the controversial Trans-Pacific Partnership trade deal until the Senate first deals with two stalled bills that may soon expire.
Reid says that the two measures, an infrastructure bill on highway funding, and reforms to the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act (FISA), are "very complicated issues," that require the Senate's attention "before we even deal with [the Trans-Pacific Partnership]."
The Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP), a massive free trade agreement currently being promoted by the Obama Administration, has been heavily criticized by humanitarian groups, environmental groups, and medical groups. . . .
5/1/2015 House Reverses DC Law Banning Reproductive Health Discrimination by Employers - The US House of Representatives voted Thursday night to overturn a Washington, DC, law that makes it illegal for employers to retaliate against employees who use their insurance to cover procedures like in-vitro fertilization or abortion and contraception like birth control pills and IUDs for themselves, their spouses, or their children.
The District's council passed the Reproductive Health Non-Discrimination Amendment Act last year. . . .