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Federal Appeals Court places stay on order expanding abortion in Missouri

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In a single sentence, Friday, the full 8th Circuit Court of Appeals placed a temporary stay on an order requiring the state of Missouri to issue licenses to additional abortion clinics.

“I applaud the Eighth Circuit’s decision,” said Missouri Attorney General Josh Hawley, who has led the fight against Planned Parenthood’s original November lawsuit. “The health and safety of Missouri women will now be protected while the court considers the merit of our appeal.”

Planned Parenthood Great Plains countered in a statement, “These are politically and ideologically motivated laws that will do nothing but harm Missourians.”

In April, citing a 2016 Supreme Court decision, U.S. District Judge Howard Sachs had struck down 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. Two weeks later he 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.”

Although Missouri AG Hawley had appealed the decision, the Missouri Department of Health and Senior Services had no choice but to issue a license to the Midtown Kansas City health center which offer ring chemical (RU-486) abortions beginning today. But the effect of the appeals court temporary stay is to at least temporary halt the Abortion Industry’s plans to begin providing abortions elsewhere– in Columbia, Springfield and Joplin.

Prior to Judge Sach’s activism, there was only one abortion clinic–Planned Parenthood in St. Louis–which performs both surgical and chemical abortions.

On Friday, the full 8th Circuit Court of Appeals issued a temporary stay on an order mandating the state of Missouri to issue licenses to additional abortion clinics, a decision applauded by Missouri Attorney General Josh Hawley who emphasized the importance of protecting the health and safety of Missouri women while the court evaluates their appeal, yet Planned Parenthood Great Plains criticized the move, denouncing the laws as politically and ideologically motivated and foreseeing harm to Missourians, with this legal battle stemming from U.S. District Judge Howard Sachs’s April ruling, grounded in a 2016 Supreme Court decision, which struck down two Missouri laws, one mandating abortionists to have admitting privileges at a nearby hospital and another requiring abortion clinics to meet ambulatory surgical center standards, subsequently leading to Judge Sach’s order directing prompt processing of abortion clinic license applications, notably resulting in the issuance of a license to the Midtown Kansas City health center for offering RU-486 abortions, but the 8th Circuit’s temporary stay effectively halts the Abortion Industry’s expansion plans in Columbia, Springfield, and Joplin, marking a significant shift from the previous landscape where Planned Parenthood in St. Louis was the sole provider of both surgical and chemical abortions before Judge Sach’s intervention.


Chelsea Garcia is a political writer with a special interest in international relations and social issues. Events surrounding the war in Ukraine and the war in Israel are a major focus for political journalists. But as a former local reporter, she is also interested in national politics.

Chelsea Garcia studied media, communication and political science in Texas, USA, and learned the journalistic trade during an internship at a daily newspaper. In addition to her political writing, she is pursuing a master's degree in multimedia and writing at Texas.

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