6-Week Abortion Ban in Iowa, Republicans Passed the Law!
The majority of abortions will no longer be legal in Iowa after six weeks of pregnancy when most women are still unaware that they are pregnant.
After the governor, Kim Reynolds, called a special session to demand a vote on the ban, Republican lawmakers, who control the House and Senate of Iowa, passed the anti-abortion legislation.
In a rare, all-Republican one-day legislative burst lasting more than 14 hours, the bill was approved with no Democratic support.
After the governor signs the bill on Friday, it will go into immediate effect and ban abortions after the first indication of cardiac activity, which is typically around six weeks, with some exceptions for rape or incest cases. Only specific instances of a medical emergency will qualify for abortions up to 20 weeks of pregnancy. Up until 20 weeks ago, abortions in the state were legal.
“Justice for the unborn should not be delayed” …
Reynolds said in a statement: The Iowa supreme court questioned whether this legislature would pass the same law they did in 2018, and today they have a clear answer. “Justice for the unborn should not be delayed,” state the voices of Iowans and their democratically elected representatives.
The law is the most recent in a string of anti-abortion measures adopted by states across the nation since the supreme court struck down Roe v. Wade last year, ending the constitutional right to abortion on demand nationwide. A few states, including a large portion of the southern US, have passed complete abortion bans with no exceptions for rape or incest cases.
Once Reynolds signed the bill into law, plans were already in place to swiftly file legal challenges in court and have the measure blocked.
The state’s supreme court disallowed a comparable six-week ban that the legislature passed in 2018 one year later. Abortion is no longer a constitutionally protected right in Iowa, according to a more conservative court’s ruling after Roe was overturned. Reynolds is attempting to pass new legislation in a special session this week as a result of the court’s last month’s 3-3 split on whether to lift the 2018 law’s ban.
Mark Stringer, executive director of the ACLU of Iowa, said in a statement that his organization, Planned Parenthood, and the Emma Goldman Clinic “remain committed to protecting the reproductive rights of Iowans to control their bodies and their lives, their health and their safety – including filing a lawsuit to block this reckless, cruel law.”
Planned Parenthood North Central States has announced that if a patient has an out-of-state abortion appointment in the coming weeks, they will refer them. Patients who arrive before cardiac activity is found will still receive care from the organization, which is the biggest abortion provider in the state.
Crowds of pro-choice demonstrators gathered in the capitol rotunda during the bill’s debate, chanting “Vote them out” at Republican lawmakers as they were present. According to a survey conducted by the Des Moines Register and Mediacom Iowa last year, 61% of Iowans were generally in favor of access to abortion care, a figure that is consistent with national attitudes towards the right to an abortion.
Before the vote on Tuesday, there was a public hearing where lawmakers heard brief statements from those in favor of and against the bill. Numerous medical professionals and advocates for reproductive rights pleaded with the legislature to rethink the proposal, stating that it would be extremely harmful to society, reduce bodily autonomy, and make it impossible for doctors to treat patients.
According to obstetrician and gynecologist Amy Bingaman, “You would be subjecting a woman to a lifelong obligation which affects her education, career, family, and community.”
During the hearing, supporters of the bill thanked lawmakers and hailed the legislation as a victory for their cause, with many coming from Christian organizations and staunch anti-abortion activist groups.