Tennessee abortion clinics seek order to keep providing care

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NASHVILLE, Tenn. — Tennessee abortion providers are asking a federal judge to order that abortions can go forward despite an executive order from Gov. Bill Lee aimed at reducing the spread of the coronavirus.

Their lawyers argue in a motion filed Monday night that Lee’s order blocking nonemergency health care procedures should not apply to abortions.

They say it imposes “extreme burdens” by potentially forcing women to travel out of state during a pandemic or wait weeks for an abortion, increasing their medical risk. Continuing pregnancies also increases burdens on the health care system, going against order’s stated purpose.

The attorney general’s office plans to respond soon.

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