The Republican-controlled Indiana legislature approved a bill that would ban nearly all abortions, making Indiana the first state to pass new legislation severely restricting access to abortion after the US Supreme Court overturned Roe vs. Wade.
The passage of the law also comes on the heels of Kansas voters rejecting an attempt to repeal abortion rights in that state, and after the case of a 10-year-old rape survivor in Ohio — who sought an abortion in Indiana after her state banned abortion — drew international scrutiny.
At least 10 states have effectively banned abortion after the June 24 Supreme Court ruling. Anti-abortion lawmakers are expected to place more restrictions in nearly half of the United States in the coming weeks and months. If signed into law, Indiana law Project It comes into effect on September 15.
Anti-abortion lawmakers frequently referred to their Christian faith during the debate in the Indiana House of Representatives on August 5, while at least one Republican lawmaker warned that the state would face God’s wrath by allowing any abortions under any circumstances.
After the final vote of 62 to 38 in the hall, one protester shouted “Shame on you, Indiana.” Outside the doors, a crowd of protesters chanted “Shame on you.”
The bill then passed in the Senate by a vote of 28-19. Republican Governor Eric Holcomb is expected to sign it into law.
Following the House amendments, the bill would ban abortion at all stages of pregnancy, with exceptions only in cases of rape, incest, “fatal malformation” or to prevent “permanent harm to the life or physical health of the pregnant woman.”
Survivors of rape or incest can only request an abortion up to 10 weeks into the pregnancy. According to Indiana laws, incest does not include sexual behavior with a cousin.
“There is no scientific reason for 10 weeks,” Democratic Senator Shelley Yoder said in the Senate August 5. “That’s a number that seemed kind enough for Republicans to text.”
The licenses of providers who perform illegal abortions will also be revoked.
The legislation — which was passed within two weeks at the start of a special legislative session the governor convened — was not taken up in the state legislature’s health committees. Instead, he was sent to committees that review criminal law.
“We need to stop calling ourselves pro-life.”
State Republican Representative Ann Vermillion, among a handful of state House Republicans to support an unsuccessful amendment to allow abortion up to 13 weeks, voted against the bill, citing her “ideological” shift over the past several weeks on the issue.
“I believe no government should take away the right to safe medical care,” she said in her emotional remarks on the floor of the House of Representatives. “She should be able to choose her life and her well-being during times of emotional and traumatic.”
She also condemned the repeated injections of Christianity and in the hours-long controversy, she called the Republican Party’s anti-abortion rhetoric “propaganda.”
“After these two weeks, I am begging our Republican Party to revise the word… ‘pro-life.’ I think we should stop calling ourselves pro-life if it just means we have a priority list in life.”
State Republican Representative John Jacob was among three House Republicans who voted against the bill, believing it was not strict enough. He called it “a pathetic weak bill that still allows the killing of children.”
“You call for God’s judgment on our state and nation,” he said in remarks in the parliament hall on Friday. “Abortion is evil and it is barbaric.”
Renee Buck, a Democrat from the state, a US Army veteran, said she chose to have an abortion in 1990 while working at Fort Hood.
“After everything I’ve been through in my life, it took me to get to the state house for my colleagues to call me the killer,” she said in her remarks to the House of Representatives. “Sir, I am not a killer, and my sisters are also not killers. … We think we have control over our bodies. That’s what we are.”
State Representative Sue Errington, a former director of public policy at Planned Parenthood, said the issue of exceptions was “not really the core” of the legislation.
“The gist of the issue… who decides?” She said. “The heavy hand of the government will decide for them. Though every woman’s situation is different, [the bill] He says one size fits all.
Anti-abortion legislation has also been criticized as prophesied by the idea that competent adults are unable to determine their own health decisions, condemning Indiana’s “cruel vision of women in our state.”
“You can trust us, women, to know what we can handle in our lives,” she said. “This suggestion that we don’t know what is best for ourselves degrades us as human beings and turns women into second-class citizens.”
She told the protesters outside the room: “I’ve been in your shoes before. I’ve lived through the previous days Ro. I don’t want to go back there. The only abortions you can ban are safe and legal abortions.”
Abortion care in Indiana has come into the international spotlight, highlighting the fragility of care throughout the Midwest and across the United States.
An Indianapolis-area obstetrician-gynecologist who provided abortion care to a 10-year-old rape survivor is filing a potential defamation suit against state Republican Attorney General Todd Rocetta, who was among the GOP figures who joined a media campaign to undermine her narrative. She claims unfounded that she did not follow the law.
Dr. Caitlin Bernard urged lawmakers to reject the bill.
Her employer, Indiana Health University, the state’s largest health system and the state’s only academic medical center, He said in a statement That the bill would negatively affect its ability to provide “safe and effective patient care” and could “deter clinicians seeking to live and practice health care” in the state.
Vice President Kamala Harris also traveled to the state to meet with lawmakers last week.
Indiana currently allows abortions until about 22 weeks of pregnancy, but restrictions include mandatory waiting periods, state-directed counseling and ultrasounds, and a ban on some health insurance coverage.
Targeted regulations of abortion provider laws, or TRAP laws, also require providers to have so-called admissions concessions to local hospitals and other burdensome regulations for provider offices, such as requiring certain room sizes.
The state also prohibits telemedicine appointments for access to medical abortion, the most common form of abortion care, using prescription medications that can often be taken in the comfort of the patient’s home, in many cases. The new bill, if it becomes law, would also ban medical abortion.
severely 55 percent Among all abortions in Indiana in 2020 were drug abortions.