News Abortion

North Carolina Governor Opposes Appeal of Ultrasound Ruling

Emily Crockett

Gov. Pat McCrory said that "costly and drawn out litigation" would not be worth the trouble over the one provision that was struck down, which would have forced all women seeking an abortion to receive and be shown a narrated ultrasound before their procedure.

Republican North Carolina Gov. Pat McCrory said he opposes appealing a court ruling that permanently blocked a 2011 law forcing all women seeking abortions to receive and be shown a narrated ultrasound before their procedure.

McCrory said that since “the heart of the legislation remains intact,” an appeal would not be worth the state’s time and expense.

“After extensive review, I do not believe costly and drawn out litigation should be continued concerning only one provision that was not upheld by the court,” McCrory said in a statement.

The law, which was passed before McCrory took office, would have forced a provider to show a woman seeking an abortion an ultrasound four to 72 hours before the procedure, place the image in the woman’s line of sight, describe the fetus in detail, and offer the opportunity to listen to the heartbeat. The woman would be allowed to avert her eyes or try not to listen, but her objections would not stop the narration.

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The January 17 court ruling found that this amounted to state-compelled speech and a violation of doctors’ First Amendment rights.

Republican leaders of the state assembly have indicated support for an appeal, however, and Attorney General Roy Cooper will ultimately be responsible for deciding whether to appeal the ruling.

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