Attorney General Ferguson signs on in support of DOJ lawsuit against Idaho abortion ban

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Signaling his support for access to reproductive services, Washington state Attorney General Bob Ferguson joined other state attorneys generals Tuesday in supporting the U.S. Department of Justice’s lawsuit against Idaho’s new abortion laws by filing a “friend of the court” brief.

Twenty other state attorneys generals also signed on to support the amicus brief, including those from California, Hawaii and Oregon.

The near-total ban on abortions in Idaho is scheduled to go into effect on Aug. 25.

The DOJ’s lawsuit contends that Idaho’s ban would violate the federal Emergency Medical Treatment & Labor Act because the new law doesn’t provide exemptions to save the life of the mother. In some cases, such as ectopic pregnancies or miscarriages, abortion care may be necessary to save the life of the pregnant person, they said.

Individuals seeking access in other states such as Washington will further strain the healthcare system, Ferguson also said.

“We are already seeing a significant influx of Idahoans seeking abortion services in Washington, and that will only increase with this new, restrictive law,” Ferguson said. “What happens in Idaho directly impacts Washington. Not only is Idaho’s near-total ban on abortion wrong, it violates federal law.”

Ferguson also signed onto a second amicus brief Tuesday against the state of Texas and anti-abortion organizations that are challenging the federal court’s authority to enforce the Emergency Medical Treatment & Labor Act in Texas. Twenty other state attorneys generals from states such as Colorado, New York and Washington, D.C., also signed onto the friend of the court brief.