• State Rep. Kelly Keisling

Tennessee's pro-life legislation deemed constitutional

Today, the Sixth Circuit Court of Appeals upheld Tennessee's 48-hour waiting period for abortions as constitutional. This ruling reverses the lower court's previous decision.


The court recognized that “Before making life’s big decisions, it is often wise to take time to reflect. The people of Tennessee believed that having an abortion was one of those decisions. So they passed a law requiring a waiting period of 48 hours.”


“The Sixth Circuit’s decision is gratifying for several reasons,” said Attorney General Herbert H. Slatery III. “First, the result: a law passed by our representative lawmakers and signed by the Governor five years ago—yes, five years ago—is constitutional. It has been on the books a long time. The Court concluded that, during this time, the 48-hour waiting period has not been a substantial obstacle to getting an abortion in Tennessee. Second, the opinion was a reasoned analysis of the law and the lack of proof offered by the plaintiffs, rather than a decision based on policy. Also, this ruling comes after the full Court reconsidered an earlier decision by a three-judge panel of the same Court.”


The full opinion can be read by clicking here.


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To reach State Representative Kelly Keisling, call 615-741-6853 or email him at rep.kelly.keisling@capitol.tn.gov.


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