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The Alabama state Senate passed a bill that would ban nearly all abortions in the state, sending it to Republican Gov. Kay Ivey’s desk. If she signs it, the bill would become the nation’s strictest pro-life law.
The bill passed the Senate by a 25-6 margin, after passing the house 74-3. Ivey has not said publicly whether or not she will sign the bill, although she is expected to. It has been the source of horrifying comments by Democratic legislators and chaotic shouting matches in the Legislature.
Under the bill, abortion is banned in all cases except in situations when it would be necessary in order to save the life of the mother. There are no exceptions for rape or incest, which the author, state Rep. Terri Collins, said was intentional in order to give the bill a higher chance of forcing federal court, and eventually Supreme Court challenges.
Mothers who get abortions would not be prosecuted under this law. Those who perform abortions would be criminally charged and could face between 10 and 99 years in prison if convicted.
This bill, which goes even further toward banning abortion than Georgia’s pro-life “heartbeat” abortion law, is another attempt to force the issue of abortion before the Supreme Court with the aim of weakening or overturning Roe v. Wade.
“This bill is about challenging Roe v. Wade and protecting the lives of the unborn because an unborn baby is a person who deserves love and protection,” Collins said, according to The Washington Post. “I have prayed my way through this bill. This is the way we get where we want to get eventually.”
With a conservative majority on the Supreme Court, Democrats have grown concerned about what might happen if the court takes up an abortion case. Some states have begun the process of amending state constitutions in case Roe v. Wade is overturned.