Planned Parenthood sues Montana over new abortion laws

Planned Parenthood of Montana filed a lawsuit Monday seeking to block four new laws restricting access to abortion in the state.

The laws are set to take effect Oct. 1. They would ban abortion after 20 weeks of gestation; restrict access to abortion pills; require abortion providers to ask patients if they would like to view an ultrasound; and prohibit insurance plans that cover abortion procedures from being offered on the federal exchange.

The lawsuit filed in Yellowstone District Court claims the laws violate Montana’s constitution, which protects access to abortion before the fetus is viable, generally at 24 weeks gestation. It says the laws will reduce the number of locations where abortion services are offered and will threaten abortion providers with civil and criminal penalties.

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