Mississippi bill would ban abortion for race, sex, genetics

MGN Online

Mississippi Republican Gov. Tate Reeves is expected to sign a bill that would ban abortion based on the race, sex or genetic anomalies of a fetus.

Posted: Jun 23, 2020 4:10 PM

JACKSON, Miss. (AP) — Mississippi Republican Gov. Tate Reeves is expected to sign a bill that would ban abortion based on the race, sex or genetic anomalies of a fetus, possibly setting up another lawsuit by abortion-rights groups in a state that already has some of the strictest laws in the U.S.

The state House voted 91-25 Tuesday to pass the final version of the bill, which cleared the Senate by a wide margin last week.

Supporters said the bill would prevent abortion for Down syndrome or other conditions. Opponents said it would interfere with private medical decisions in a state with one abortion clinic.

“This unconstitutional restriction adversely affects poor women who do not have the means to seek assistance elsewhere,” said Beth Orlansky, advocacy director for the Mississippi Center for Justice.

Sue Liebel is state policy director for Susan B. Anthony List, a group that opposes abortion. She praised Mississippi lawmakers for passing the bill.

“Abortions carried out because of a baby’s sex, race, or potential disability, such as Down syndrome, constitutes modern-day eugenics,” Liebel said Tuesday.

Nine states ban abortion because of the sex of the fetus, two ban it because of race and two ban it because of genetic anomaly, according to the Guttmacher Institute, a research group that supports abortion rights. Missouri is the only state that has banned all three. Kentucky’s ban on all three reasons has been put on hold by court order.

The Mississippi bill would set a prison sentence of up to 10 years for any physician or other health care worker who knowingly violates the ban. It specifies that the woman getting the abortion would not be punished, and the ban would not apply if the woman faces a medical emergency because of the pregnancy.

With the addition of conservative justices to the U.S. Supreme Court in recent years, several states have enacted abortion restrictions. Some laws are aimed at spurring court challenges seeking to overturn Roe v. Wade, the landmark 1973 Supreme Court ruling that legalized abortion nationwide.

Mississippi has long required a 24-hour waiting period for abortions. Minors also must obtain permission from their parents or a judge.

In 2018, Mississippi tried to ban most abortions at 15 weeks. The state’s only abortion clinic sued, a federal district judge blocked the law and a federal appeals court agreed with his ruling. State officials have asked the U.S. Supreme Court to consider the case.

In 2019, Mississippi legislators voted to ban most abortions once fetal cardiac activity can be detected, which can be at about six weeks — before some women know they are pregnant. A judge blocked the restriction from becoming law.

Mississippi Coronavirus Cases

Data is updated nightly.

Cases: 319948

Reported Deaths: 7371
CountyCasesDeaths
DeSoto22285267
Hinds20719421
Harrison18431317
Rankin13901282
Jackson13718248
Madison10263224
Lee10059176
Jones8467167
Forrest7832153
Lauderdale7261242
Lowndes6517150
Lamar635188
Lafayette6313121
Washington5425137
Bolivar4841133
Panola4670110
Oktibbeha466198
Pearl River4605147
Marshall4574105
Warren4440121
Pontotoc425873
Monroe4157135
Union415777
Neshoba4063179
Lincoln4008112
Hancock386987
Leflore3515125
Tate342486
Sunflower339491
Pike3371111
Alcorn327272
Scott320374
Yazoo314171
Adams308086
Itawamba305178
Copiah299966
Coahoma298784
Simpson298589
Tippah291968
Prentiss284161
Leake272074
Marion271280
Covington267283
Wayne264642
Grenada264087
George252251
Newton248663
Tishomingo231868
Winston230181
Jasper222148
Attala215073
Chickasaw210559
Holmes190474
Stone188433
Clay187954
Tallahatchie180041
Clarke178980
Calhoun174132
Yalobusha167840
Smith164134
Walthall135347
Greene131834
Lawrence131124
Montgomery128643
Noxubee128034
Perry127238
Amite126242
Carroll122330
Webster115032
Jefferson Davis108234
Tunica108127
Claiborne103130
Benton102325
Humphreys97533
Kemper96629
Franklin85023
Quitman82216
Choctaw79118
Wilkinson69632
Jefferson66228
Sharkey50917
Issaquena1696
Unassigned00

Alabama Coronavirus Cases

Cases: 548657

Reported Deaths: 11306
CountyCasesDeaths
Jefferson810031566
Mobile42105831
Madison35690525
Tuscaloosa26173458
Shelby25607254
Montgomery25081614
Baldwin21868314
Lee16278176
Calhoun14719327
Morgan14629285
Etowah14175364
Marshall12453230
Houston10781287
Elmore10293214
Limestone10179157
St. Clair10162251
Cullman9952201
Lauderdale9603250
DeKalb8972190
Talladega8460184
Walker7338280
Autauga7241113
Blount6945139
Jackson6932113
Colbert6413140
Coffee5635127
Dale4928116
Russell454841
Chilton4476116
Franklin431382
Covington4275122
Tallapoosa4138155
Escambia401680
Chambers3728124
Dallas3607158
Clarke353061
Marion3240107
Pike314378
Lawrence3133100
Winston283472
Bibb268564
Geneva257981
Marengo250565
Pickens236962
Barbour234559
Hale227278
Butler224271
Fayette218862
Henry194543
Randolph187544
Cherokee187345
Monroe180041
Washington170539
Macon163051
Clay160059
Crenshaw155957
Cleburne153444
Lamar146837
Lowndes142254
Wilcox126930
Bullock124342
Conecuh113630
Coosa111729
Perry108626
Sumter105732
Greene93634
Choctaw62125
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