Legal /

Abortion Regulations That Are Now in Effect Following Repeal of Roe V. Wade

Abortion is still legally protected in 20 states

The Supreme Court overturned Roe v. Wade and returned the right to regulate abortion to the states.

The 6-3 decision, released on June 24 as part of Dobbs v Jackson Women’s Health, triggered dormant abortion laws in states across the country.

Mississippi’s 15-week abortion ban was at the center of the Dobbs case. The state also has passed a ban on abortion after six weeks, which is now in effect.

Near-total bans went into immediate effect in Alabama, Arkansas, Louisana, South Dakota, and Wisconsin.

West Virginia’s constitution specifies the right to abortion is not guaranteed or protected. The overturning of Roe restores a state code that makes providing an abortion a felony – as it was prior to 1973.

At least eight states require an administrative step to be completed before their bans on abortion are effective.

Idaho’s ban on abortion will go into effect in July — 30 days after Roe was overturned per state law. Similarly, Missouri required its governor or attorney general to certify the repeal of Roe for its ban on abortion to go into effect while Utah needs its legislative general counsel to certify the court’s reversal for its legislature to enact an abortion ban. Wyoming requires its governor to certify state law banning abortion within 30 days of the court’s decision.

The ban on abortion in North Dakota, which was declared constitutional by the attorney general, must be approved by the Legislative Council now that the court’s decision is official. Oklahoma, which already has restrictive laws regarding abortion, needs its attorney general to certify the Roe decision to implement a ban on abortion at six weeks or when a fetal heartbeat is detected.  State law in both Texas and Tennessee stipulates an abortion ban is effective 30 days following the overturning of the Supreme Court’s prior decision. Tennessee’s constitution also prohibits the protection of abortion.

Arizona passed a ban on abortion after 15 weeks of pregnancy in April. Florida and Kentucky also prohibit abortions after 15 weeks.

Georgia and Iowa both ban abortions after six weeks.

Kansas currently protects abortion through state law but residents may support an effort to revise the state’s constitution to specify there is no right to an abortion during an Aug. 2 vote.

Over 20 states have laws or constitutional amendments that guarantee residents the right to abortion.

This includes: Alaska, California, Colorado, Connecticut, Delaware, Hawaii, Illinois, Maine, Maryland, Massachusetts, Minnesota, Montana, Nevada, New Hampshire, New Jersey, New Mexico, New York, Oregon, Rhode Island, Vermont, and Washington

There are also several “undetermined states” — meaning states with no legal protection for or ban on abortion — including Indiana, Nebraska, North Carolina, Ohio, Pennsylvania, South Carolina and Virginia.

Michigan’s ban, which was in effect prior to the Roe decision, has been legally challenged in court. The state’s governor Gretchen Whitmer has publicly advocated for legal protection for abortions in Michigan.

Abortion could become illegal in Michigan in nearly any circumstance, including in cases of rape and incest, because of a 1931 law on the books banning abortion in Michigan,” Whitmer said in a statement in May. “We must protect the nearly 2.2 million women in Michigan and the tens of millions of American women who would lose the right to make decisions about their bodies… We are going to fight like hell to protect access to safe, legal abortion.”

A draft of Justice Samuel Alito’s majority opinion was leaked to the press and published by Politico in early May. Protestors decried the impending opinion and staged protests outside the homes of justices as well as around the Supreme Court.

Both pro-abortion activists and anti-abortion demonstrators gathered outside the Supreme Court following the court’s decision.

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