The governor of the U.S. state of South Carolina has signed a law that prohibits almost all abortions in the state. Only under certain circumstances is an abortion allowed, such as rape, incest, or if the life of the pregnant woman is at risk.
It is one of the most stringent abortion bans in the country, which applies from the moment the fetus has been diagnosed with a heartbeat. A fetus already has a heartbeat after six weeks, but generally in the United States a fetus is considered viable only after 24 weeks. Anyone who breaks the new law risks imprisonment.
Immediately after the law has been ratified, the health organization Planned Parenthood filed a lawsuit against the state. The organization calls the law unconstitutional, because in 1973 the US Supreme Court ruled that the Constitution protects womens right to abortion.
“ Politicians from South Carolina use an abortion ban to attack and re-victim victims of sexual violence,” responds Director Alexis McGill Johnson of Planned Parenthood in a statement.
Republican governor McMaster spoke yesterday after signing the law of “a great, happy day”. “There are a lot of happy hearts in South Carolina right now.”
Several US states have adopted abortion laws similar to those in South Carolina, with most still being challenged in federal courts. In 2019, a similar abortion law in the State of Iowa was annulled.