There’s scads of legal precedent against so-called heartbeat bills, but they continue to be introduced by conservative states. That’s because they’re intended to force a court challenge. And with the current Supreme Court composition, anti-abortion advocates see a chance of toppling Roe v. Wade with such legislation. The approach, however, highlights some cracks in the anti-abortion movement.
The Washington Post: Ohio Heartbeat Bill: U.S. Republicans Hope To Take Advantage Of New Supreme Court
North Dakota state lawmakers passed the first “heartbeat” bill in 2013 — a law that banned abortions after the detection of a fetal heartbeat, which can happen as early as six weeks, before a woman even knows she is pregnant. Lower courts ruled it unconstitutional, based on the landmark U.S. Supreme Court ruling in Roe v. Wade, and the high court refused to hear the appeal. Iowa passed a similar bill last year, and a state judge declared it unconstitutional, too. (Mettler, 4/12)
NPR: State Abortion Foes Split Over How Best To Test Roe V. Wade
The new anti-abortion tilt of the U.S. Supreme Court has inspired some states to further restrict the procedure during the first trimester of pregnancy and move to outlaw abortion entirely if Roe v. Wade ever falls. But the rush to regulate has exposed division among groups and lawmakers who consider themselves staunch abortion opponents. On Thursday, Ohio became the latest state to ban abortions after a fetal heartbeat can be detected. For a long time, Ohio Right to Life supported a more gradual approach to restrict the procedure and deemed what’s come to be called a “heartbeat bill” too radical — until this year. (Farmer and Fortier, 4/12)
The Associated Press: Unsuccessful Abortions Focus Of Bill In N. Carolina Senate
The abortion debate is intensifying in North Carolina over a Republican measure supporters say will ensure doctors care properly for live babies delivered in unsuccessful abortions. Abortion-rights activists argue the proposal slated for state Senate floor debate late Monday is unnecessary for a non-existent problem and is designed to intimidate physicians and women who need medically necessary later-term abortions. (4/15)
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Source : Kaiser Health