Wednesday, August 17

Indiana becomes first state to restrict abortion after ‘Roe vs. Wade’ ruling is overturned

  • The new regulations prohibit it except in rape, incest or for abnormalities that put the fetus or the mother at risk.

Indiana on Friday became the first of the 50 US states to pass a bill to restrict access to abortion. after the Supreme Court reversed the 1973 ruling, known as ‘Roe versus Wade’, which protected that right at the federal level. The bill passed both houses of the state legislature and is now headed to the office of Republican Indiana Governor Eric Holcomb for signing into law. Once he does, the bill is scheduled to go into effect on September 15. At that time, Indiana will join the other nine US states with laws that almost totally ban abortionaccording to the Guttmacher Institute, dedicated to reproductive rights research.

The initiative was rejected en bloc by the Democrats of the two houses of the state parliament but it could be approved because the Republicans have a majority in Indiana, a state in the Midwest of the USA and where 72% of the population is Christian, according to data from the Pew Center. Republicans in Indiana had been working on this bill for weeks, but they were divided: a majority wanted to completely ban abortion while a minority believed that some exceptions should be established in the case of rape or incest. Finally, included exceptions for rape, incest and also in case the fetus has abnormalities that make their survival impossible, or the life of the mother is in danger.

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Until now, abortion was legal in Indiana up to 22 weeks gestation. In late June, the conservative-majority Supreme Court struck down Roe versus Wade, ending federal abortion protections and giving states permission to set their own rules. This has caused some states to begin implementing the so-called “zombie laws” that had been proclaimed before the Supreme Court guaranteed the right to abortion in 1973, while other states have activated “spring laws” so called because they were designed to come into force just as the right to abortion was repealed. Until now, no state has passed a new legislative bill to restrict abortion: Indiana is the first.

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That decision comes after voters in the state of Kansas voted in a referendum this week. overwhelmingly in favor of keeping abortion rights intact as it is currently regulated in the state Constitution, in what was a resounding defeat for the conservatives.

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