The Latest: Arkansas governor OKs ban of abortion procedure

AP News
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Posted: Jan 26, 2017 5:56 PM

LITTLE ROCK, Ark. (AP) — The Latest on an Arkansas measure that would ban a common second-trimester abortion procedure (all times local):

4:55 p.m.

Arkansas Gov. Asa Hutchinson has signed into law a ban on a common second-trimester abortion procedure.

The Republican governor on Thursday signed a measure prohibiting the procedure known as dilation and evacuation. Abortion-rights supporters contend it's the safest and most common procedure used in second-trimester abortions.

The ban is expected to be challenged in court.

Hutchinson signed the measure hours after the majority-GOP Senate approved it along mostly party lines. The majority-Republican House approved the measure earlier this week.

The ban will take effect 90 days after the Legislature formally adjourns this year's session, which is expected to end sometime in April or May. Mississippi and West Virginia have similar bans in effect. Those in other states have been put on hold due to legal challenges.

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11:50 a.m.

The Arkansas Legislature has approved a measure to ban a commonly used second-trimester abortion procedure, and the governor is expected to sign it into law.

The majority-GOP Senate voted 25-6 on Thursday to ban the procedure known as dilation and evacuation. Abortion-rights supporters contend it's the safest and most common second-trimester abortion procedure.

The legislation now goes to the desk of Republican Gov. Asa Hutchinson, who has said he will sign it into law.

According to the Arkansas Department of Health, 683 of the 3,771 abortions performed in Arkansas in 2015 were performed through the procedure.

Abortion opponents have called the procedure "barbaric," while Planned Parenthood has blasted the legislation as unconstitutional. Mississippi and West Virginia have similar bans in effect.