Gestational Age Bans: Harmful at Any Stage of Pregnancy
Megan K. Donovan, Guttmacher Institute
First published online: January 9, 2020
Efforts to ban abortion by gestational age surged in 2019, helping to expose antiabortion lawmakers’ true agenda to eliminate abortion rights entirely.
Using gestational age as a legal cutoff for abortion care is harmful at any point in pregnancy.
States such as Oregon and Vermont are leading the way in enacting laws that prohibit government interference in abortion care throughout pregnancy.
Here's How Conservatives Are Using Civil Rights Law to Restrict Abortion
Here Are the Details of the Abortion Legislation in Alabama, Georgia, Louisiana and Elsewhere
By Abigail Abrams
January 1, 2020
Six states passed laws in 2019 banning abortions once a “fetal heartbeat” is detected, which can be as early as six weeks into pregnancy. While most of these new laws were challenged in court and are temporarily blocked, the trend has continued: another 10 states introduced similar bills in 2019 and more are expected this year.
The sudden success of these measures is not an accident. They are the result of a concerted new strategy by abortion opponents, researchers have found.
Inside the conservative organization undermining abortion access one state at a time
By Ray Levy-Uyeda
Dec 26, 2019
This year, a record number of six-week abortion bans, dubbed “heartbeat bills," were introduced at the state level. The goal of these restrictive measures was ostensibly to “protect the lives of the unborn” — as well as to issue a sneaky challenge to existing law set by the 1973 Roe v. Wade decision, which says abortion is legal in all 50 states. The bans rely on the bogus claim that a vaginal ultrasound can detect a fetal “heartbeat” six weeks into pregnancy, giving pro-life advocates a foundational claim to fetal personhood.
In reality, these “heartbeats” are not any real sign of sentient life. But the movement is successfully restricting access to abortion in large part because of the activism of one woman: Ohioan Janet Folger Porter, who uses her organization, Faith2Action, to lobby for and proliferate such legislation.
Why Anti-Abortion Lawmakers Have Become So Open About Attacking ‘Roe’
Nov 25, 2019
Since Trump entered the presidential race in 2015, anti-abortion advocates and lawmakers "have been emboldened with horrific rhetoric that supports a climate of violence against abortion providers," said Erin Matson, co-founder and co-director of Reproaction. "They’re just going for the jugular."
In late October, Pennsylvania state Rep. Stephanie Borowicz (R-Clinton County) and state Sen. Doug Mastriano (R-Franklin County) introduced a bill banning abortions as early as six weeks into a pregnancy. During the press conference, Borowicz said the bill could be the “dagger in Roe v. Wade.”
What’s Become of All the Extreme Abortion Bans From This Year?
By Amanda Arnold
Oct 2, 2019
The first six months of the year saw relentless attacks on abortion rights on the state level. Five states passed bills banning the procedure after six weeks, before many women even realize they’re pregnant. And in May, Alabama governor Kay Ivey signed a near-full ban on the procedure. The same month, Missouri — a state with only one abortion clinic — passed an extreme eight-week ban that didn’t include any exceptions for instances of rape, incest, or human trafficking. In all, seven states have passed similarly stringent laws in 2019, and more are considering them.
But in recent months, judges in many of these states have started to issue preliminary injunctions, which allow patients to continue accessing important reproductive care while the court hears the case in full to determine whether or not the bill is constitutional. In short, these court orders — also known as temporary blocks — maintain the status quo, allowing abortion to remain legal. Most recently, on October 1, a federal judge temporarily blocked Georgia’s ban.
Abortion Bans Based on So-Called “Science” Are Fraudulent
Our silence in the face of new anti-choice laws across the U.S. is deafening
By Nicole M. Baran, Gretchen Goldman, Jane Zelikova
on August 21, 2019
We are scientists, and we believe that evidence, not ideology, should inform health care decisions. The wave of anti-abortion laws across the U.S. is the latest in a long string of attempts to falsely use the language and authority of science to justify denying people their basic human rights and inflict lasting harm. Although abortion is still legal in every state, recent legislation in Alabama, Georgia, Kentucky, Louisiana, Mississippi, Missouri and Ohio threatens the future of abortion rights in the country. Scientists should, first and foremost, value evidence, and the evidence is clear: abortion bans cause harm. They make abortions less safe and especially harm historically marginalized communities.
Global Lessons on Abortion: 9 Pieces from Women Journalists Offer Cautionary Tales for the U.S.
May 30, 2019
America is grappling with a recent surge of restrictive reproductive rights bills in states across the country. The culling of abortion and reproductive care may seem like a new challenge for the U.S., but the impact of these laws in other countries is well known.
Women journalists continue to cover different perspectives on anti-abortion legislation, and its ramifications, around the world. Their coverage creates a cautionary tale of how restriction impacts women, girls, and the communities they inhabit.
Unprecedented Wave of Abortion Bans is an Urgent Call to Action
Elizabeth Nash, Guttmacher Institute
First published online: May 22, 2019
2019 has become the year when antiabortion politicians make clear that their ultimate agenda is banning abortion outright, at any stage in pregnancy and for any reason.
For years, antiabortion efforts have publicly focused on more incremental or administrative measures, such as targeted regulation of abortion providers (TRAP) laws that severely undermine access but are designed not to appear as a frontal assaults on abortion rights.
Now, abortion opponents have dropped all pretenses. With a conservative U.S. Supreme Court poised to gut or overturn Roe v. Wade, radical and expansive abortion bans are being enacted as part of a long-term strategy to advance these cases to the Supreme Court.
U.S. lawmakers break rape silence as abortion bans spread
As one Republican legislature after another has pressed ahead with restrictive abortion bills, they’ve been confronted with raw testimony about the consequences
The Associated Press
Updated: May 18, 2019
COLUMBUS, Ohio — For more than two decades, Nancy Mace did not speak publicly about her rape. In April, when she finally broke her silence, she chose the most public of forums — before her colleagues in South Carolina’s legislature.
A bill was being debated that would ban all abortions after a fetal heartbeat is detected; Mace, a Republican lawmaker, wanted to add an exception for rape and incest. When some of her colleagues in the House dismissed her amendment — some women invent rapes to justify seeking an abortion, they claimed — she could not restrain herself.
The Abortion Bans Aren’t Just About Repealing Roe v Wade
The extreme, dangerous anti-abortion laws in Ohio, Alabama, and Georgia are serving as a distraction from the Right's real agenda: closing every last loophole to abortion access once ‘Roe’ is overturned.
May 15, 2019
It is 2019 and abortion is still legal. Yes, in each and every state in America.
This seems like something that shouldn’t need to be announced, yet here we are. Over the past few weeks we’ve seen abortion restrictions hit a fever pitch, with Georgia and Ohio signing so-called “heartbeat” bans, which would make abortion illegal within about two weeks after a missed period), and a ban that criminalizes abortion at conception passing in both chambers of the Alabama legislature, which is expected to be signed by the governor.