On Wednesday, Kentucky’s Republican state legislature voted to override Democratic Gov. Andy Beshear’s veto of a broad anti-abortion bill.
House Bill 3, an anti-abortion omnibus bill that prohibits the mailing of abortion pills, tightens requirements for minors seeking abortions, and mandates the creation of a system to register and monitor abortions, was overridden by a vote of 76-21 in the House and 31-6 in the Senate, overriding Beshear’s veto.T
he bill also included an emergency provision, which meant that it would take effect immediately if Senate President Robert Stivers signed it.
The bill’s proponent, Republican Rep. Nancy Tate, said it would protect women’s health and improve the rights of parents and adolescents who have abortions, while others were blatantly anti-abortion.”
Abortion of a newborn is simple wrong,” said Norma Kirk-McCormick, a Republican state representative. “I pray that God would have mercy on anyone who takes a child’s life.”
Outside the House rooms, protesters chanted “Bans off our bodies” as lawmakers debated the override, with Democrats opposing the bill.
“Right now, I can hear people outside yelling, ‘Bans off our bodies,'” said Democratic state Rep. Rachel Roberts, who previously claimed to have been raped as a 14-year-old. “People came out today because this topic is so important.
That should be enough to persuade you. I strongly urge you to think about the implications of this measure. I implore you to grant this veto. Consider myself a 14-year-old rape victim.”
While the bill does not make abortion illegal, Nicole Erwin of Planned Parenthood Alliance Advocates of Kentucky and Indiana said Wednesday morning that the bill’s “laundry list of regulations” will make it impossible for abortion providers to comply.”
Make no mistake: the Kentucky legislature’s sole purpose with this law is to close health clinics and fully prohibit abortion access in the state,” said leaders from the ACLU and Planned Parenthood.
On Wednesday, the American Civil Liberties Union announced that it would launch a lawsuit contesting the bill, while Planned Parenthood announced that it would submit its own lawsuit on Thursday.
Opponents of the bill’s lawyers also said they would urge a judge in the United States District Court in Louisville to temporarily halt the law’s implementation while their case is underway, but abortion access in the state would undoubtedly be disrupted at least temporarily.