States Are Competing to Pass the Country's Worst Anti-Abortion Laws


On Monday, Republican Mississippi governor and enemy of working women Phil Bryant signed the nation’s most prohibitive abortion bill into law. The law makes it illegal to get an abortion after 15 weeks in Mississippi, where over a third of children already live in poverty and infant mortality rates are the highest in the country.

Diane Derzis, the owner of Mississippi’s only abortion clinic, has indicated she will sue the state over the new law.

But Mississippi may hold the “most restrictive abortion bill in America” distinction for only a short time, if Iowa lawmakers get their way. On Thursday, the state’s Republican-dominated House Human Resources Committee voted 12-9 in favor of the “fetal heartbeat” amendment, which would ban abortions around the six-week mark. A similar bill passed the Iowa Senate last month.

Iowa already has a 72-hour waiting period for women seeking an abortion, and bans them outright after 20 weeks.

As with Mississippi’s abortion law, the Iowa restrictions would only be waived if a mother’s life was in danger. No exceptions are made for victims of rape or for minors.

Iowa lawmakers have not been swayed by the suggestion that their pet provisions could be declared unconstitutional, as occurred with similar laws in Arkansas and North Dakota. In fact, according to the Des Moines Register, supporters hope the anti-abortion law will eventually lead to the overturning of Roe v. Wade in the Supreme Court.

From the Register:

Rep. Sandy Salmon, R-Janesville, said she doesn’t understand people who claim to support safe abortions. “It’s an oxymoron. Who is an abortion safe for? It’s not safe for the baby, because they’re all killed. It’s not safe for the woman. Some are killed and the rest are wounded,” she said.

These states are just some of a number that have introduced increasingly restrictive abortion bills, including a likely unconstitutional ban on aborting children with Down Syndrome in Utah and a chilling, if far-fetched, ban on abortions in their entirety in Ohio.

The latter, which would also charge doctors who perform them with murder, was introduced by two Republican lawmakers in the state just today.

Inline Feedbacks
View all comments
Share Tweet Submit Pin