July 21st, 2024

Texas woman who sought court permission for abortion leaves state for the procedure, attorneys say

By Paul J. Weber, The Associated Press on December 11, 2023.

AUSTIN, Texas (AP) – A pregnant Texas woman who sought court permission for an abortion in an unprecedented challenge to one of the most restrict bans in the U.S. has left the state to obtain the procedure, her attorneys said Monday.

The announced came as Kate Cox, 31, was awaiting a ruling from the Texas Supreme Court over whether she could legally obtain an abortion under narrow exceptions to the state’s restrictive bans. A judge gave Cox permission last week but that decision was put on hold by the state’s all-Republican high court.

“Her health is on the line. She’s been in and out of the emergency room and she couldn’t wait any longer,” said Nancy Northup, president and CEO of the Center for Reproductive Rights, which was representing Cox.

Cox was believed to be the first woman in the U.S. to ask a court for permission for an abortion since Roe v. Wade was overturned last year. Her lawsuit quickly became a high-profile test of bans in Texas and a dozen other GOP-controlled states, where abortion is prohibited at nearly all stages of pregnancy.

Days after Cox filed her lawsuit, a pregnant woman in Kentucky last week also asked a court to allow an abortion. There has been no ruling yet in that case.

Doctors have told Cox that her fetus is at a high risk for a condition known as trisomy 18, which has a very high likelihood of miscarriage or stillbirth, and low survival rates, according to the lawsuit.

They also told Cox that inducing labor or carrying the baby to term could jeopardize her ability to have another child in the future.

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