Arkansas Governor Approves Ban On Second-Trimester Abortion Procedure, Legal Challenge Expected To Be Uphill Battle
A new bill attacking abortion was signed in Arkansas by their governor and it is expected to be an uphill battle as to the bill possibly being deemed unconstitutional. The bill approved is about banning the commonly used second-trimester abortion procedure.
The Arkansas governor, Asa Hutchinson, signed the bill into a law and it is mainly about banning the procedure called dilation and evacuation. Pro-abortion activists claim the dilation and evacuation procedure is the most common and the safest used in second-trimester abortions.
The bill was approved just hours before Hutchinson signed it with a 25-6 vote from the Senate in the state. It is set to take effect later this year, ABC News reported.
U.S. News reported that Hutchinson did not release any statement regarding the signing of the bill into a law but the president of Arkansas Right to Life praised the move noting the second-trimester abortion procedure was barbaric. Republican Senator David Sanders, who is a co-sponsor of the measure, added, "I thinks this is a humane bill.... I think it does move us to a more compassionate society."
The American Civil Liberties Union of Arkansas protested that the measure was unconstitutional. The executive director of the group, Rita Sklar, believes that it would be a costly bill as there will be litigations in the future.
Similar laws were passed in Mississippi and Virginia and are in effect. Similar laws in Alabama, Kansas, Louisiana, and Oklahoma, however, have been postponed due to the legal challenges they are facing.
The Arkansas law will be taking effect 90 days after the Legislature will formally adjourn their 2017 session. It is unclear, however, if it will be facing legal challenges and if the courts will order the postponement of the law.
The second-trimester abortion procedure in question was used in the 683 abortions in Arkansas in 2015. A total of 3,771 abortions were performed during that year.
The approval of the bill came after Donald Trump reinstated the Ronald Reagan abortion policy. International health groups getting aid from the United States will no longer get funding if they discuss or perform abortions.