Judge orders abortion clinic applications “processed promptly,” Missouri AG vows to appeal decision

By Dave Andrusko

U.S. District Judge Howard F. Sachs

U.S. District Judge Howard F. Sachs

On Tuesday, in his follow up to his April 19th decision granting a preliminary injunction, U.S. District Judge Howard Sachs issued an order directing abortion clinic license applications “to be processed promptly, in light of patient needs, and without effective influence from opponents of abortion,” the Columbia Tribune reported.

“The federal district judge was clear in his order Tuesday that the licensing process should be completed promptly, and we have every reason to believe that it will be,” Laura McQuade, president and CEO of Planned Parenthood Great Plains, said in a news release.

As we reported earlier this month, Judge Sachs blocked two Missouri laws– one requiring abortionists to have admitting privileges at a hospital within 30 miles, the other requiring abortion clinics to meet the requirements of ambulatory surgical centers.

Missouri Attorney General Josh Hawley

Missouri Attorney General Josh Hawley

Meanwhile Attorney General Josh Hawley reiterated his intention to appeal Judge Sachs decision. “The order leaves in place other state safety regulations regarding abortion facilities, as well as the state’s licensing requirements,” Hawley said. “I am disappointed the court has struck down important safety measures that protect the health and well-being of those women who choose to undergo an abortion. I will appeal the court’s decision and order.”

Sachs also specified the statutes and state regulations challenged by the plaintiffs Planned Parenthood of Great Plains and Planned Parenthood of St. Louis that are “not enjoined pending further orders of the court.”

According to ABC 17 News, “That means women seeking an abortion will have to follow laws requiring them to wait 72 hours after consulting with a doctor and clinics must provide mandated materials on abortion alternatives.”

Missouri currently has one abortion clinic–Planned Parenthood in St. Louis–which performs both surgical and chemical abortions. But McQuade said,”(Planned Parenthood Great Plains) stands ready to receive licenses to begin providing abortion services at the Midtown KC and Columbia, Missouri health centers.”