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Pro-Choice Advocates Say Courts Not Fooled By Mississippi 'Trap' Law
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Pro-abortion rights activists says a recent ruling about a Mississippi abortion law shows that attempts to end legal abortion across the south are not working. The activists say courts are not fooled by so-called 'trap' laws.

According to abortion rights supporters, a trap law is any law that claims to be generally protecting women's health while its true aim is to make it impossible for specific clinics to operate.

They point to a Mississippi law recently put on hold by a federal court that would require doctors at abortion clinics to have admitting privileges at a local hospital....something providers at the state's lone clinic cannot get.

Dr. Hal Lawrence with the American College of Obstetrics and Gynecology says that law actually makes it MORE dangerous for women.

"They do that by delaying or even preventing abortion when a woman needs it. These laws can actually increase risk to our patients making abortion less safe," Lawrence said.

Lawrence says other out patient procedures, like colonoscopy which has a mortality rate 40 times that of abortion, are not being targeted for regulation.

Alexa Kolvi-Molinas with the ACLU says it is unconstitutional to regulate clinics out of existence.

"Abortion is a constitutionally protected right. but it is one that cannot be practiced without access. And it is within this framework that one cannot say they are protecting women's health if the real world impact decreases access to abortion," Molinas said.

Leading Mississippi Republicans, including their Governor and Lt. Governor, have said it is their goal to make Mississippi abortion free.

But in the case of the admitting privileges law, Mississippi's house public health chair Sam Mims recently said women's health truly is the primary concern.

"This legislation has always been about the best possible health care for woman who receive an abortion. I still believe that having physicians obtain privileges at a local hospital makes sense," Mims said.

The state of Mississippi has requested that the entire fifth circuit court of appeals review the law.

However, the ultimate word on the constitutionality of it and similar laws could likely come from the U-S supreme court.