Nikki Haley approves 20-week abortion ban in SC

Nikki Haley approves 20-week abortion ban in SC
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South Carolina Gov. Nikki Haley on Wednesday signed a bill to ban nearly all abortions after 20 weeks of pregnancy.

The legislation, which offers exceptions only to women whose lives are threatened or if their fetus would not survive outside the womb, is considered the cornerstone of the anti-abortion movement's policy agenda in 2016. 

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The new law is almost certain to face a court challenge from abortion rights supporters, who argue such laws are unconstitutional.

Thirteen other states have also recently enacted 20-week bans, as has the House.

It’s a policy that leaders of the anti-abortion movement say helps to rally their base while putting Democrats on defense. Polls have shown that slightly more than half of Americans support banning abortions after 20 weeks.

The bills are often introduced with “fetal pain” in their titles: The House passed a version last yeart called the “Pain Capable Child Protection Act,” which drew a veto threat from the White House.  

Federal courts have struck down 20-week bans in several other states, ruling that the legislation violates Supreme Court precedent that protects abortions up to the point of viability, generally considered to be between 24 and 28 weeks.