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Abortion clinic seeks restraining order as gov. signs new la

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Abortion clinic seeks restraining order as gov. signs new law
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Woman outside Jackson Women's Health Organization
Associated Press

Mississippi's governor signs the most restrictive abortion bill in the nation as the only abortion clinic in the state files a restraining order against the law. MPB's Desare Frazier reports.

Abortions in Mississippi are now banned after 15 weeks. Governor Phil Bryant signed House Bill 1510 into law Monday afternoon.

"We're saving more of the unborn than any state in America, what better thing could we do," said Governor Bryant.

The owner of Jackson Women's Health Organization says they're filing a temporary restraining order to stop the law from taking effect. Diane Derzis says they have several clients who are 15 weeks pregnant. One of them is scheduled to have an abortion today.

"She's already had her counseling. She's had everything done except the procedure and now we have a law that stands in the way of preventing her from doing just that," said Derzis.

The clinic is the only one is that provides abortions statewide. Previously, state law banned abortions after 20 weeks. Derzis says they did not perform abortions beyond 16 weeks, so the law actually reduces access to a legal abortion by one week. There is no exception for victims of incest or rape. House Republican Andy Gipson of Braxton supports the law.

"It's certainly a bill that we believe protects the life and safety of women and also the unborn and so I'm glad to see that it's going into law," said Gipson.

Derzis says the new law is part of a strategy to get a sympathetic U.S. Supreme Court to reverse Roe v. Wade.

"We're talking about a bill that he knows is clearly unconstitutional. They're hoping that they're going to get all this legislation up in front of the Supreme Court with the hopes that Trump has appointed a justice who agrees with them," said Derzis.

The 15 week Abortion Ban Law took effect as soon as the governor signed the bill.