The 1973 Roe v. Wade Supreme Court ruling that gives women nationwide the right to obtain abortions, also gives states the right to restrict abortions after viability. Effective immediately, one more state joined at least 13 others on Wednesday that bans abortions 20 weeks after fertilization.
Two exceptions are allowed on the bill – if the mother’s life is in danger, or if a doctor determines the fetus can’t survive outside the womb. Doctors who violate the law face up to 3 years in prison and up to $10,000 in fines. Prison time is mandatory on the third conviction.
Republican Governor Nikki Haley signed the bill into law Wednesday for South Carolina.
Pro-choice advocates claim this law restricts women’s access to safe, legal abortions, but the sponsor of the bill, Rep. Wendy Nanney, said “the killings needs to stop” and sees this is the first step toward eventually ending abortion completely.
Haley’s signature was expected for this bill. During her campaign for governor in 2010, she stated, “I’m strongly pro-life, very pro-life and not because my party tells me to be, but my husband was adopted, and so every day I know the blessings of having him there.”
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