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Iowa ‘fetal heartbeat’ abortion restriction declared unconstitutional, struck down by Polk County judge

Iowa’s “fetal heartbeat” law — the most restrictive abortion limit in the country — violates Iowa Constitution and may not be enforced, a state judge ruled Tuesday.

In his decision striking down the abortion law, Polk County District Judge Michael Huppert cited the Iowa Supreme Court’s ruling last year in a challenge to a different abortion-restriction law. The high court held that “a woman’s right to decide whether to terminate a pregnancy is a fundamental right under the Iowa Constitution” in that ruling.

The “fetal heartbeat” law, passed last spring, had been on hold during a legal challenge by Planned Parenthood of the Heartland and the American Civil Liberties Union of Iowa. Huppert overturned it in a nine-page ruling Tuesday.

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