Oklahoma Legislature Passes Law Making Performing an Abortion a Felony

Oklahoma Legislature Passes Law Making Performing an Abortion a Felony

The Oklahoma legislature has approved a bill that would criminalize performing abortions in the state. It has been sent to the desk of Governor Mary Fallin. She will have five days to decide if she will sign the bill, veto it or allow it to become law without her signature.


The bill will automatically become law after five days if the governor does not come to a decision. Should it become law, doctors who perform abortions in the state will be subject to felony charges in addition to the loss of their medical license.

“The governor will withhold comment on that bill, as she does on most bills, until she and her staff have had a chance to review it,” Michael McNutt, a spokesman for Fallin, said in an email.

The law is unprecedented in the USA in terms of placing restrictions on abortions. The Center of Reproductive Rights says the bill is in “contravention of long standing federal and state constitutional principles as well as basic human rights.”

Former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton condemned the legislature’s decision on Twitter.
“We can’t sit by while extreme politicians attack women’s basic rights. Not only is this unconstitutional—it’s wrong,” she tweeted.
Given that the Supreme Court has ruled that a state cannot prohibit a woman from having an abortion so long as the fetus is not viable outside of the womb, the bill is likely to be challenged in the courts should it become law.
The law is also drawing attention because of the fact that Republican presidential candidate Donald Trump has previously expressed interest in having Fallin be his running mate. The bill seems to be consistent with statements Trump has made regarding abortion.

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