Half of the states will ban abortion immediately and the other half will be pressured to follow
Roe Vs Wade is overturned by the US Supreme Court. Abortion bans in Arkansas, Kentucky, Louisiana, Missouri, Oklahoma and South Dakota went into immediate effect. The laws make performing an abortion a felony punishable by yearslong prison sentences. They do not make exceptions for rape or incest. However, women cannot be prosecuted for receiving an abortion under the laws.
On the West Coast, the governors of California, Oregon and Washington vowed to expand access to abortion and protect women who come to their states in need of the procedure.
Read the reactions to Roe v. Wade being overturned
Anyone who performs an abortion in Arkansas, Louisiana and Oklahoma faces 10 years in prison unless the procedure is done to save the life of the pregnant woman. Arkansas and Louisiana also make exceptions for physicians to end ectopic pregnancies or treat miscarriages.
In Missouri, anyone who performs an abortion would face up to 15 year jail sentence, unless the procedure is done in the case of a medical emergency.
In Kentucky, anyone who performs an abortion would face up to five years in prison. The law makes exceptions to save the life of the pregnant woman or procedures by physicians that result in the unintentional end of a pregnancy. Gov. Andy Beshear, a Democrat, condemned the law as extremist.
Any person who performs an abortion in South Dakota now faces up to two years in prison, unless the procedure is performed to protect the life of the mother.
Idaho, Tennessee and Texas will implement abortion bans in 30 days, according to the text of the laws. Abortion bans in Mississippi, Missouri, North Dakota, Oklahoma, Utah and Wyoming go into effect after the attorney general, governor or certain legislative bodies certify that the Supreme Court has done away with Roe.
On Friday, U.S. Attorney General Merrick Garland said the Department of Justice will protect women who travel from states with bans to receive abortions in states where the procedure is legal.
“Few rights are more central to individual freedom than the right to control one’s own body, Garland said. “The Justice Department will use every tool at our disposal to protect reproductive freedom. And we will not waver from this Department’s founding responsibility to protect the civil rights of all Americans.”
Abortion pill next flashpoint
States banning abortion are also outlawing use of the abortion pill to end pregnancies. However, women cannot be punished for receiving abortions under the laws, which means many people may turn to online pharmacies based abroad to have pills delivered to their homes.
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