New Nebraska Anti-Abortion Law May Never Be Implemented
Even proponents of Nebraska’s new, restrictive abortion law acknowledge it may never see the light of day. It bans all abortions after 20 weeks of pregnancy and may never pass a Supreme Court test.
Mary Spaulding Balch, legislative director for National Right to Life, said a court injunction will likely prevent the implementation of the law. The measure passed last week by Nebraska’s nonpartisan Legislature and signed into law by Republican Gov. Dave Heineman is scheduled to take effect in October.
Lower courts have no precedent to support the law, which bases the new restrictions on the assertion that fetuses feel pain.
Dr. LeRoy Carhart, one of the nation’s few late-term abortion providers (whose clinic is pictured), is a likely candidate to initiate a court case against the law. The law was created with Carhart in mind.
Carhart said in a statement that the passage of the law and another that requires women to get pre-abortion screenings for mental and physical problems has strengthened his commitment to protecting women’s reproductive rights.
The fetal pain law “blatantly violates” court precedent that abortions can’t be banned before viability, so it is likely that an injunction will be issued, said Caitlin Borgmann, an abortion law expert and professor at The City University of New York.
Jordan Goldberg of the Center for Reproductive Rights said the bill plays off the notion of fetal pain and a state’s right to protect a fetus and “none of those reasons are sufficient to outweigh a woman’s right to end a pregnancy.”Click here for reuse options!
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