- Associated Press - Wednesday, April 2, 2014

MONTGOMERY, Ala. (AP) - A federal judge has set a May 19 trial date for a lawsuit challenging a new Alabama abortion law.

U.S. District Judge Myron Thompson will hold a non-jury trial concerning an Alabama law that requires doctors at abortion clinics to have approval to admit patients to nearby hospitals. Three of Alabama’s five licensed abortion clinics challenged the law on grounds it would force them to close.

The judge has ruled the trial will focus on one issue: whether the law violates the due process right of women seeking abortion by creating substantial obstacles.

Proponents of the law say it’s designed to protect women’s health by making sure that clinic doctors are available for care when patients have complications.

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