First state abortion bans kick in following Supreme Court ruling
(The Hill) — The first state abortion bans have taken effect after the Supreme Court on Friday overturned Roe v. Wade, driving home the immediate consequences of the monumental decision.
Abortion bans are now in effect in Louisiana, South Dakota, Kentucky, and Missouri, and more states are expected to soon follow.
Thirteen states have “trigger” laws that ban abortion in the event of Roe v. Wade being struck down. Not all of those trigger laws go into effect immediately, but in three states they do: Louisiana, South Dakota and Kentucky, according to the Guttmacher Institute, a research organization that supports abortion rights.
In Missouri, which first required the change’s certification from the state attorney general, Attorney General Eric Schmitt on Friday quickly certified that Roe v. Wade has been overturned, putting the ban into effect.
“With this attorney general opinion, my Office has effectively ended abortion in Missouri,” said Schmitt, who is currently running for the U.S. Senate.
His office said there are exceptions to the ban for a “medical emergency.”
“My Office has been fighting to uphold the sanctity of life since I became attorney general, culminating in today’s momentous court ruling and attorney general opinion,” Schmitt added.
Six other states could soon follow, according to Guttmacher, once their requirement of certification from the state attorney general or other official occurs: Arkansas, Mississippi, North Dakota, Oklahoma, Utah and Wyoming.
Mississippi’s 15-week abortion ban had originally brought the issue before the high court.
Three more states have trigger bans that will take effect in 30 days: Idaho, Tennessee and Texas.
In Kentucky, Democratic Gov. Andy Beshear blasted the trigger law taking effect.
“Today’s decision triggers an extremist Kentucky law that creates a total ban in Kentucky that will eliminate all options for victims of rape or incest,” Beshear tweeted.
The cascade of state abortion bans illustrates that abortion will be illegal in most cases across many of the states controlled by Republicans. Women in those states seeking abortions could have to travel hundreds of miles, at significant cost, to try to find a provider.
Overall, Guttmacher estimates that abortion is likely or certain to be banned in 26 states.
“Even with today’s horrible decision, abortion is still legal in most of the country. People who need care should go to abortionfinder.org,” Planned Parenthood said in a statement.