Judge’s Ruling Makes North Dakota First to Ban Abortions Based on Down Syndrome

A judge’s ruling dismissing part of an abortion center’s lawsuit against a North Dakota law that bans abortions on disabled unborn children on the basis that they are disabled makes the state the first to have such a ban in place.

With the governor’s signature on the ban earlier this year, North Dakota has become the first state to ban abortions based on genetic “defects” like Down Syndrome. When diagnosed before birth, such genetic abnormalities prompt couples to have abortions 90 percent of the time.

The state legislature approved the measure and Republican Gov. Jack Dalrymple signed it in March.