- Associated Press - Monday, January 25, 2016

BISMARCK, N.D. (AP) - North Dakota Attorney General Wayne Stenehjem (STEHN’-juhm) says it’s “no surprise” the Supreme Court will not allow the state to enforce a law banning abortions when a fetal heartbeat is detected as early as six weeks into a pregnancy.

The justices on Monday turned away the state’s appeal of lower court rulings that struck down the 2013 fetal heartbeat law as unconstitutional. The law never took effect, and abortion rights supporters said it was the strictest anti-abortion measure in the country.

Stenehjem called review of the law a “longshot,” especially after the high court last week rejected Arkansas’ bid to enforce its own fetal heartbeat law, banning some abortions at 12 weeks.

Opponents say the North Dakota law was an attempt to shutter the state’s only abortion clinic in Fargo.

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