Lawmakers in Kentucky passed a bill Wednesday that bans most abortions, setting the stage for another legal battle in the state.
The GOP-led Senate voted 32-4 to send the bill to Kentucky's pro-life Republican Gov. Matt Bevin.
The legislation would ban abortion for women seeking to terminate their pregnancies on the basis of the baby's gender, race or disability such as Down syndrome.
"House 5 recognizes and affirms that all human life has intrinsic value," said Sen. Ralph Alvarado. "House Bill 5 would hold the abortionists accountable for performing an abortion for a specific reason - because the baby is a boy or girl, because the baby is a particular race or because they might be born with a known or suspected disability."
Republican leaders in the state have sought to restrict abortion since taking control of the state's legislature in 2017.
Less than 24 hours after the bill's passage, the American Civil Liberties Union filed a federal lawsuit challenging it and asking a judge to block it.
The ACLU of Kentucky, which is involved in several abortion-related legal battles in the state, tweeted, "We will see the state of Kentucky in court (again)."
Kentucky will always fight for life...
— Governor Matt Bevin (@GovMattBevin) March 13, 2019
Bevin took to Twitter to respond to the ACLU. "Bring it!" he wrote. "Kentucky will always fight for life."
Two days earlier, he wrote an op-ed saying his administration will "fight with all of our intellect, our talent, and our heart to defend the innocent."
The ACLU also vowed to fight the state's newest and most restrictive measure which would ban most abortions once a fetal heartbeat is detected - about six weeks into a woman's pregnancy.
The Kentucky House voted late Thursday night to send the so-called fetal heartbeat bill to the governor's desk.
"These bans are blatantly unconstitutional," claimed Brigitte Amiri, deputy director with the ACLU Reproductive Freedom Project.
Meanwhile, several other states are working on similar measures.