South Carolina Governor Signs Law Banning Abortions After 20 Weeks

South Carolina governor Nikki Haley has signed into law a bill that bans abortion in the state after 19 weeks of pregnancy unless the mother’s life is at risk or the fetus has an “anomaly” that will lead to its death. The bill was passed by the South Carolina state legislator last week. It carries no exceptions for rape or incest.

“I believe that life begins at conception and every step we can take to get back to that point is important,” said the bill’s sponsor, Republican Representative Wendy Nanney. “In my view and many others’, it’s inhumane to subject that baby to pain at 20 weeks.”

South Carolina is the sixteenth state to pass a law restricting or prohibiting abortion by the 20th week of pregnancy. In three of those states the bans were overturned by the courts. South Dakota’s ban will take effect on July 1st. Last week, Oklahoma Republican Governor Mary Fallin vetoed a bill that would have made it a felony for doctors to perform abortions in her state, stating that the language of the bill was too vague and would likely be unable to stand up in court.

“We are incredibly disappointed in Gov. Haley for signing HB 3114 into law today,” Jenny Black, president and CEO of Planned Parenthood South Atlantic, said in a statement.

“In reality, abortion later in pregnancy is extremely rare and often takes place in difficult and complicated situations where a woman and her doctor need every medical option available.

The Supreme Court, in its 1973 Roe v Wade decision, gave states the right to restrict abortion so long as the fetus is viable outside of the womb.

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