By SARA CLINE
BATON ROUGE, La. (AP) — Louisiana’s Supreme Court has rejected an appeal filed by plaintiffs in the ongoing legal battle over the state’s abortion ban. The rejection Friday means the state’s near-total abortion ban is still in effect as legal challenges to the law proceed. The ruling marked a major blow to abortion-rights advocates and providers, who had hoped the ban would be blocked for a third time, allowing the three clinics in the state to begin performing procedures again. Louisiana’s ban was designed to take effect when the U.S. Supreme Court overturned its 1973 Roe v. Wade ruling establishing nationwide abortion rights. The ban does not include exceptions for rape or incest.