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Iowa court: Abortion not protected by state constitution

The decision in Iowa stemmed from a lawsuit filed by abortion providers challenging a 2020 law that 24 hours waiting time before a woman could have an abortion. A judge who struck down the law cited the 2018 state Supreme Court ruling. The judge also concluded that the law violated rules prohibiting the adoption of bills with more than one subject.

The state Supreme Court has sent the case back to court over the waiting period.

In its 2018 ruling, decided by 5-2 votes, the court said that “autonomy and dominion over one’s body go to the heart of what it means to be free.”

The reversal of a decision after just four years reflects a dramatic change in the composition of the court. Governor Kim Reynolds has appointed four judges since 2017, so six of the seven people in the court were appointed by Republican governors.

Reynolds, an outspoken opponent of abortion rights, and Republicans in the Legislature have repeatedly said they hoped the court would overturn the 2018 ruling. With that in mind, Reynolds and GOP lawmakers gave the governor more control over the panel that chooses which attorneys and judges are nominated for judicial positions.

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