Fulton County judge deciding if he has authority to issue injunction over Georgia’s heartbeat law

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A Fulton County judge is deciding if he has the authority to issue a temporary injunction preventing enforcement of Georgia’s heartbeat abortion law while that case is being heard in court.

Channel 2′s Richard Elliot watched the hearing that kept getting delayed and delayed by Zoom-bombers.

It got so bad, the judge had to shut down the Zoom link and create a new one.

“It’s going to be an interesting afternoon,” Fulton County Superior Court Judge Robert McBurney said during the proceedings.

Both sides weighed in as to whether or not Judge McBurney had the legal authority to issue a preliminary injunction preventing the state from enforcing the heartbeat abortion law while the case moves through the state court system.

The plaintiff says he can.

“The state can, conceding we can bring this case. But they say, ‘No, you can’t get a temporary restraining order or a preliminary injunction,’” attorney Julia Stone said.

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The state of Georgia, however, argued the Constitution prevents a judge from issuing an injunction in cases like this one.

“Look, if you want to invalidate an entire law, OK. Let’s not do this piecemeal litigation thing. That’s fine; you can sue the state and just the state,” said Stephen Petrany with the Georgia attorney general’s office.

The plaintiffs want Fulton Superior Courts to declare the heartbeat abortion law unconstitutional, something they decided to do after the U.S. Supreme Court overturned Roe v. Wade.

The ACLU of Georgia’s executive director Andrea Young said in June that was their goal since they believe Georgia’s constitution has a stronger guarantee of a right to privacy than the U.S. Constitution.

“Georgia’s Supreme Court has made very strong statements about a right to privacy — stronger statements than even were made by the federal courts,” Young said.

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