PHOENIX - Women by the millions marched for abortion rights on Oct. 2 from Miami to Seattle – as well as in Phoenix.
The marches come as several states, including Arizona, are attempting to restrict abortions with cases creeping closer to the U.S. Supreme Court's doorstep.
"The ban is off, my body is mine and I have the decision to do what I want with my body," a woman said as hundreds gathered outside the Arizona State Capitol Saturday morning for a Women's March.
"I am here to support women and their choice and I am here, especially here, to support young women and their choice and I don't believe the legislature has any right to make a decision based on a woman's body," Sandy Wilkerson said.
A lawyer for several Arizona abortion providers urged a federal judge to block a new state law that would allow prosecutors to charge doctors who knowingly terminate a pregnancy solely because the fetus has a genetic abnormality such as Down syndrome.
The law was so vague that it would dissuade doctors from performing an abortion anytime there’s an indication that the fetus might have a genetic problem for fear of criminal prosecution, argued Emily Nestler, senior counsel at the Center for Reproductive Rights.
U.S. District Judge Douglas Rayes blocked that portion of the law.
He also threw out another provision that would have let prosecutors bring charges against anyone who helped raise money or pay for abortions done solely because of genetic abnormality.
In September, legislation passed in Texas that bans abortions after about six weeks. At that time, most women don't know they're pregnant.
Now, the Supreme Court is reconvening to review one of the cases that could challenge the current standing of Roe v. Wade, which protects a woman's right to an abortion.
Senate Bill 8, also known as the "Heartbeat Law", bans abortions in Texas once a fetal heartbeat can be detected. The law doesn't list an exact gestational age but doctors say this is around the six-week mark which is a time before many women know they're pregnant.
Abortion remains a constitutional right under Supreme Court precedent. But the structure of SB 8 allows it to skirt precedent by offloading the enforcement of the statute from government and law officials to private citizens.
The law has also proved controversial due to it not exempting victims of rape or incest.
The Associated Press contributed to this story.
- Judge considers request to block new Arizona abortion law
- Federal judge holds hearing about new Texas abortion law
Tune in to FOX 10 Phoenix for the latest news: