Score one for life.
WICHITA (AP) — A federal judge refused Thursday to block enforcement of a new Kansas law that restricts insurance coverage for abortions.
U.S. District Judge Wesley Brown rejected a request from the American Civil Liberties Union for a temporary injunction while the group challenges the law in court. Brown said the ACLU, which filed its lawsuit in August, failed to back its claim that legislators who passed the law this year primarily intended to create obstacles to obtaining abortions.
The Kansas law took effect July 1. It prohibits insurance companies from offering abortion coverage as part of their general health plans, except when a woman’s life is at risk. Those who want abortion coverage would have to buy supplemental policies, known as riders, covering only abortion.
In his 19-page order, Brown wrote the ACLU’s argument “lacks any evidentiary showing that the law actually has the effect of creating a substantial obstacle to obtaining an abortion.”
Brown, who at age 104 is the nation’s oldest sitting federal judge, followed the recommendation of U.S. Magistrate Judge Kenneth Gale, who had a hearing in the lawsuit earlier this month. Gale concluded the ACLU failed to prove any of its members would be harmed by the law, which is required when seeking a temporary injunction.
The insurance law was among several major anti-abortion initiatives approved by Kansas legislators and signed into law this year by Gov. Sam Brownback, a Republican who called upon lawmakers to create “a culture of life” after taking office in January.