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Federal Judge: Texas Abortion Limits Unconstitutional

AUSTIN, Texas (AP) — A federal judge has ruled that new abortion restrictions passed by the Texas Legislature are unconstitutional and should not take effect as planned on Tuesday.

District Judge Lee Yeakel issued his decision Monday following a three-day trial over whether the state can restrict when, where and how women obtain abortions in Texas.

Lawyers for Planned Parenthood and other abortion providers argued that the regulations did not protect women and would shut down a third of the abortion clinics in Texas.

The Texas attorney general’s office argued that the law protects women and the life of the fetus. State officials are expected to file an emergency appeal of Yeakel’s order to the 5th Circuit Court of Appeals in New Orleans.

The proposed restrictions were among the toughest in the nation.

Copyright 2013 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

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