The Supreme Court will not allow North Dakota to enforce a law banning abortions when a fetal heartbeat is detected as early as six weeks into a pregnancy.
The justices on Monday turned away the state's appeal of lower court rulings that struck down the 2013 fetal heartbeat law as unconstitutional. The law never took effect, and abortion rights supporters said it was the strictest anti-abortion measure in the country.
The high court last week rejected Arkansas' bid to enforce its own fetal heartbeat law, banning some abortions at 12 weeks. Both measures were struck down by a unanimous panel of three judges appointed by President George W. Bush to the St. Louis-based 8th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals.