States Are Using the Cover of COVID-19 to Restrict Abortion and Healthcare for Women
With constituents distracted by the deadly pandemic, Republican state legislatures across the country are ramping up efforts to limit access to abortion
By Alex Morris
March 30, 2020
On March 18th, as the reality of the coronavirus crisis was becoming painfully apparent to Americans, the Idaho legislature was turning its attention to healthcare concerns of another kind: making sure that women were denied access to abortion at some nebulous future date. Across the country, state legislatures had gone into recess, heeding the social distancing advice of medical professionals. Not Idaho. For at least an hour on the floor of the House, there was vigorous debate over Senate Bill 1385, a so-called “trigger law” that would immediately criminalize abortion in the state if Roe v. Wade were overturned or a constitutional amendment gave states the right to criminalize it themselves. Under the law, performing an abortion would be a felony, except in instances of officially-reported rape or incest, or to save the life of the mother. “Everyone needs to face the consequences of their own personal choices,” Representative Megan Blanksma said in her closing debate, just before the bill passed 49-18 and made its way to Governor Brad Little’s desk to be signed, which it was last Tuesday.
As Coronavirus Rages On, So Does Anti-Abortion Harassment and Extremism
by Micaela Brinsley, Ms. Magazine
In clinics in North Carolina, Wisconsin and Kentucky, anti-choice protesters have continued to show up at clinics that provide abortion services, refusing to comply with the pressure for people to practice social distancing and shelter-in-place.
Witnesses have reported protesters gathering in front of clinic doors, walking up to patients, and even “shoving unwanted pamphlets and gift sacks into confused patients’ hands” and through car windows—blatantly ignoring public health recommendations for people to stand six feet apart from one other.
Opinion: The Supreme Court just let a dangerous and intrusive abortion law stand
By Ruth Faden
Dec. 11, 2019
This week, the Supreme Court announced, without explanation, that it would not hear a challenge to Kentucky’s so-called Ultrasound Informed Consent Act, which requires women to submit to a narrated ultrasound before receiving an abortion.
The court’s inaction leaves a dangerous law on the books, one that endangers not only women’s rights but also medical ethics.
How Health Officials in Pro-Life States Are Quietly Dismantling Abortion Access
Without the fanfare of a bill signing or a Supreme Court decision, the first state without an abortion clinic is in sight.
July 31, 2019
One spring day in 2017, Dr. Ernest Marshall received an inauspicious letter from the Kentucky Cabinet for Health and Family Services, the state's health agency. Marshall, a Louisville native with a round face and a trimmed mustache, has been an OB-GYN and teacher with the University of Louisville School of Medicine for nearly four decades. For just as long, he's owned what is now the state's last abortion clinic. EMW Women's Surgical Center sits on a stretch of sprawling, sparsely populated real estate in downtown Louisville, across from a cinema-sized money lender and down the block from a Subway restaurant.
What Happens When Lawmakers Run Out of Abortion Restrictions to Pass
Many states are suddenly considering heartbeat bills, which would make it virtually impossible to get an abortion. That’s no accident.
By The Editorial Board
March 20, 2019
Lost in the anxiety this year over the fate of Roe v. Wade is the reality that state legislatures nationwide are already taking steps to effectively ban all abortions.
Not even three months into 2019, lawmakers in a dozen states have proposed so-called heartbeat bills, which would outlaw abortion at around six weeks of pregnancy, when a fetal heartbeat can be detected, and thus make it all but impossible for nearly all women to get the procedure. Six of those bills have passed in at least one legislative chamber, and on Friday Gov. Matt Bevin of Kentucky signed one into law. Hours later, a federal judge temporarily blocked the Kentucky law, which was to have taken effect immediately.
The Last Clinics Standing
These six states show how the Supreme Court could end abortion access without overruling Roe v. Wade
by Jessica Arons
Oct 22, 2018
Following Brett Kavanaugh’s nomination to the Supreme Court, there was much discussion about the future of reproductive rights in the United States and whether his appointment could result in the overturning of Roe v. Wade. While that prospect remains a real threat, abortion could be made as good as illegal for millions of people long before that happens.
In 2016, the Supreme Court struck down abortion restrictions that would have closed most abortion clinics in Texas. Justice Anthony Kennedy was the swing vote in that case. With Kavanaugh confirmed as his replacement, the court could use the next abortion-rights case to eviscerate abortion access without explicitly overruling Roe.