The law is scheduled to take effect on Thursday, July 7.
The court also refused to block a separate law that bans abortion after six weeks of pregnancy.
This case was filed by the Center for Reproductive Rights and the Mississippi Center for Justice on behalf of Jackson Women’s Health Organization, the last abortion clinic in Mississippi.
“We are disappointed with this failure to enforce the Mississippi Constitution. We are reviewing the judge’s decision and considering our options,” said Rob McDuff, director of the George Riley Impact Litigation Initiative at the Mississippi Center for Justice.
After the ruling, Governor Tate Reeves (R-Miss.) said, “This law has the potential to save the lives of thousands of unborn Mississippi children. It is a great victory for life. I also believe it is critical that we showcase to every mother and child that they are loved and that their communities will support them. We have much more work to do. Every life has inherent dignity and Mississippi will continue to do everything it can to advance the fight for life.”
Judge Debbra K. Halford did not make a decision on the lawsuit Tuesday morning.
The law is set to take effect two days after the hearing. It says abortion will be legal in Mississippi only if the pregnant woman’s life is in danger or if a pregnancy is caused by a rape reported to law enforcement. It does not have an exception for pregnancies caused by incest.
Mississippi was one of several states with a “trigger” law contingent on the U.S. Supreme Court overturning Roe v. Wade, its 1973 ruling that legalized abortion nationwide.
The suit was filed Monday in Hinds County Chancery Court, three days after the Supreme Court overturned Roe v. Wade in a case that originated in Mississippi. The clinic, Jackson Women’s Health Organization, has continued to see patients, but owner Diane Derzis said it will close if the near-ban on abortions takes effect.
During the hearing, lawyers for the Jackson Women’s Health Organization cited at 1998 Mississippi Supreme Court decision that stated Mississippians have a right to an abortion under the state’s constitution.
In arguments filed Sunday, the state attorney general’s office said the Mississippi Constitution does not recognize a right to abortion and the state has a long history of restricting the procedure.
“Text, history, and precedent all show that the Mississippi Constitution does not protect a right to abortion and that the laws here are valid,” the attorney general’s office wrote.
If Halford grants the clinic’s request for a temporary restraining order to block the new law from taking effect, that decision could be appealed to the Mississippi Supreme Court.
The Associated Press contributed to this report.