State legislatures around the nation are preparing for the possible reversal by the Supreme Court of Roe v. Wade, the 1973 case that declared no state might completely prohibit abortion procedures.
The Florida state House of Representatives passed a bill this week that bans abortions after the 15th week of pregnancy. That came after similar bills were advanced in the state legislatures of West Virginia and Arizona. Each state has passed its bills through at least one chamber, and they could all be signed into law soon. The new state laws closely model the Mississippi law before the Supreme Court in Dobbs v. Jackson Women’s Health Organization.
Susan Liebel with the pro-life advocacy group Susan B. Anthony List said that the new state bills are coming as legal scholars and observers believe that the Supreme Court will uphold a ban on abortions after 15 weeks of pregnancy “at a minimum.”
Liebel told the Washington Free Beacon that an “overwhelming majority” of Americans are opposed to abortion extremism and support common-sense limitations. She expressed hope that the Supreme Court would soon return the decision-making process to the people of the states and said that her group would continue to work toward the day when all children and mothers are protected by American law.
A reversal of Roe would allow states to regulate abortions before fetal viability, usually considered to occur around the 24th week of pregnancy. Even a partial revision of Roe could move the cutoff for regulation back to the 15th week.
A dozen states have enacted “trigger ban” statutes regarding abortion that automatically ban abortions if Roe is overturned. Five other states have abortion bans that were in effect before Roe that would automatically be reinstated if Roe is overturned.
March for Life President Jeanne Mancini said the 15-week bills being passed around the nation and other pro-life legislation are evidence of great excitement in the “pro-life grassroots” as the nation awaits the decision in Dobbs. She said that follows five decades of frustration built up among the American people after the Supreme Court “robbed them of their say in protecting vulnerable life.”
The final ruling in Dobbs is expected before the end of the current term of the Supreme Court in June.