abortion

Two State Abortion Laws are a Preview of What's to Come 


Two State Abortion Laws are a Preview of What's to Come 
Image via Getty.

In two states, Indiana and Pennsylvania, lawmakers are seeking to erode access to abortion, in one case, by making it a criminal act. Earlier this week, Indiana State Representative Curt Nisly said that he would introduce a legislation that would outlaw all abortions in the state.

The “Protection at Conception” legislation, as Nisly is calling it, would make all abortions a prosecutable crime. The Indianapolis Star reports that the bill would allow the state to prosecute anyone who participated in the procedure. “You would treat the death of an unborn child like you would any other human being,” Nisly told the newspaper.

The Star suggests that the legislation, while clearly unconstitutional, is the result of anti-choice advocates feeling emboldened by the election of Donald Trump. While on the campaign trail, Trump said that women who have abortions should be “punished,” though he later softened that language. For all of his disinterest in abortion during the campaign, Trump has promised to appoint anti-choice judges. In a recent interview with 60 Minutes, the President-Elect said that he would appoint a Supreme Court justice committed to the repeal of Roe v. Wade. Nisly indicated as much:

My position is that the Supreme Court is wrong with Roe v. Wade,” Nisly said, “and they don’t have jurisdiction in this manner. This is the state of Indiana asserting the powers that are given to them, specifically in the 9th and 10th Amendments of the U.S. Constitution.”

It’s worth noting that Indiana already has some of the most restrictive abortion laws in the country thanks, in part, to former governor Mike Pence. The state currently has the fourth highest rate of maternal death in the United States and its infant mortality rate is more than two points higher than the national average.

Meanwhile, in Pennsylvania, the state’s Senate tried to push through House Bill 1948, which passed the House last year. HB 1948, aimed at restricting second-trimester abortions, makes abortion past 20 weeks illegal. The ceiling in the state is currently 24 weeks. In addition to restricting the time limit, the bill would officially rename second-trimester abortions “dismemberment abortion.” Pennsylvania’s bill has exceptions for only for the life of the mother, but detractors have criticized the exemption, saying that it’s too restrictive.

Pennsylvania’s Senate tried to sneak HB 1948 through the chamber yesterday after the Governor Tom Wolf asked them to reorganize for a special session. The intent was to pass a budget bill, but supporters put HB 1948 back into the mix. At the last minute, the bill was tabled and no vote was taken. Supporters have indicated that they will reintroduce it in the next legislative session (it’s worth noting that Pennsylvania Republicans have enough votes to override a veto).

Indiana and Pennsylvania’s bills are perhaps indicative of an anti-choice movement that’s feeling particularly emboldened right now. It’s worth remembering that the GOP currently controls the majority of state houses and these kinds of laws might find themselves with more sympathetic federal judges during inevitable challenges.

Click to add a comment

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

abortion

More in abortion

wamwducfshvc3nqmnevj.jpg

Anti-Abortion Activists Behind Secret Planned Parenthood Videos Charged with 15 Felonies 

StaffMarch 29, 2017
a6mdbnts2k7tiehqqh5h.gif

How Jezebel Unknowingly Created an International Symbol of Feminist Protest

StaffMarch 8, 2017
gg8kgiflzeuwawfcs9fo.jpg

Norma McCorvey, Roe v. Wade Plaintiff, Dies at 69

StaffFebruary 18, 2017
old5qgkawg62llwuerl6.jpg

Even Women at the March For Life Don't Like Donald Trump

StaffJanuary 28, 2017
irc9bqptwxy7sbkv5iqu.jpg

The Netherlands Plans International Safe Abortion Fund in Response to Global Gag Rule

StaffJanuary 26, 2017
aadeyxvkuubseasiraro.jpg

Federal Judge Temporarily Blocks Texas's Fetal Burial Rule 

StaffDecember 16, 2016
ui3qk7ljytul6urhogky.jpg

Tracking State Attacks on Abortion Rights in Donald Trump's America

StaffNovember 22, 2016
yp2bqpqclmk3u9tc5hp8.jpg

Abortion Doctor Warren Hern Says Congressional Investigation Against Him Could Lead to His Assassination

StaffNovember 17, 2016
kankn6fzhysphdjbybq2.png

The Most Recent Episode of Crazy Ex-Girlfriend Featured a Very Undramatic Abortion

StaffNovember 14, 2016