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Supreme Court to hear Mississippi abortion case in early December

The Supreme Court has scheduled arguments for the highly anticipated Mississippi abortion case.

The case, which will consider the legality of Mississippi’s ban on most abortions after 15 weeks of pregnancy, will be heard Dec. 1, according to the court.

Mississippi’s abortion restriction was the first to reach the court from a wave of state laws intended to challenge the 1973 Roe v. Wade decision, which declared that access to abortion was a constitutional right.

The case also comes after the high court declined to block Texas’ restrictive abortion law, which bans abortions at around six weeks of pregnancy — before most women know they are pregnant — without any exceptions for rape and incest.

The U.S. Justice Department sued Texas this month, arguing that the law, which went into effect Sept. 1, violates the Constitution. Last week, it also filed a motion asking a federal judge to temporarily block enforcement of the law. The judge scheduled a hearing for Oct. 1, keeping the law in effect.

Mississippi lawmakers in 2018 voted to ban abortions after 15 weeks except in cases of medical emergencies or severe fetal abnormality. U.S. District Judge Carlton Reeves for the Southern District of Mississippi struck the act ban, saying the state “chose to pass a law it knew was unconstitutional to enforce a decades-long campaign, fueled by interest groups, to ask the Supreme Court to overturn Roe v. Wade.”

The 5th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals affirmed the ruling, prompting the state’s appeal to the Supreme Court.

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