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Idaho Legislature passes bill banning most abortions if Roe v. Wade is overturned

Idaho Legislature passes bill banning most abortions if Roe v. Wade is overturned

(PHOTO: WIKIPEDIA)

The Idaho Legislature has passed a bill that, if enacted, would ban most abortion procedures in the state if the U.S. Supreme Court decision Roe v. Wade is overturned.

The Idaho House of Representatives voted 49-18 in favor of Senate Bill 1385 on Wednesday, with the state Senate having voted 27-7 in favor of the legislation last week.

After both houses voted to approve the proposed legislation, it was sent to the desk of Gov. Brad Little on Thursday afternoon and awaits his signature.

Sponsored by Republican state Sen. Todd Lakey, SB 1385 is meant to take effect if either the U.S. Supreme Court overturns Roe or the U.S. Constitution is amended to give states the right to ban abortion.

“Every person who performs or attempts to perform an abortion as defined in this chapter commits the crime of criminal abortion,” reads the bill in part.

“Criminal abortion shall be a felony punishable by a sentence of imprisonment of no less than two (2) years and no more than (5) years in prison.”

The proposed ban on abortion includes exemptions for rape, incest, or if a woman is facing a medical emergency in which the baby cannot be saved.

“Nothing in this section shall be construed to subject a pregnant woman on whom any abortion is performed or attempted to any criminal conviction and penalty,” added SB 1385.

The pro-life group Idaho Choose Life celebrated the House vote, calling it “a historic rebuke to the abortion regime forced upon the states by the U.S. Supreme Court in 1973.”

“Some in the pro-life movement have sought to impede this legislation, arguing that it doesn’t really do anything. We beg to differ,” the group said Thursday.

“It unapologetically makes 98% of all abortions happening in the state today illegal, once the Supreme Court recovers its proper limits of authority by restoring to the states the power to protect preborn babies and women from the scourge of abortion.”

The Idaho chapter of the ACLU has been critical of the bill, at one point claiming that it would harm women’s health.

“This legislation would prevent Idaho women from accessing safe and long-held legally protected abortion care, which is a critical component of their health and dignity, as well as independence, freedom, and social and economic equality,” the ACLU of Idaho argued.  

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