Mississippi’s push for abortion reforms, including moving to ban abortions after 15 weeks of gestation, have some pro-choice advocates thinking the end goal is to push the abortion conversation all the way to the Supreme Court.
Mississippi lawmakers passed House Bill 1510 Thursday, which will ban women from having abortions after 15 weeks gestation unless the unborn baby is not expected to survive outside the womb or if continuing the pregnancy will jeopardize the woman’s life. The bill would be the most conservative for any state, and awaits Mississippi Republican Gov. Phil Bryant’s signature.
Bryant is expected to sign the measure into law. (RELATED: Gerber Baby Inspires Down Syndrome Abortion Bans Across The U.S.)
“I think the real aim here is to instigate a legal challenge that would put abortion before the U.S. Supreme Court since abortion opponents are anticipating that in the next few years there will be a more conservative U.S. Supreme Court that will be more open to curtailing abortion rights,” Guttmacher Institute state policy expert Elizabeth Nash said, according to Governing News.
Jackson Women’s Health Organization owner Diane Derzis indicated she will sue as soon as Mississippi passes House Bill 1510, Governing News reports.
RELATED: Senate fails to pass a ban on abortions before 20 weeks gestation
Mississippi would become the first state to ban abortions before 20 weeks of pregnancy if Bryant signs House Bill 1510 into law. Mississippi already outlaws most abortions after 20 weeks gestation. Twenty other states ban abortions after more than 20 weeks gestation.
The U.S. Supreme Court declined to review an Arkansas law banning abortions after 12 weeks gestation as well as a ban on abortions after 6 weeks in North Dakota in late January, the Arkansas Times reports.
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