Iowa governor to sign 6-week abortion ban

Iowa governor to sign 6-week abortion ban
© Getty

Iowa Gov. Kim Reynolds (R) said on Friday that she planned to sign a measure that would ban abortions after six weeks of pregnancy, setting up the strictest limitations on abortion in the U.S.

In a statement, Reynolds said she would sign the bill in her formal office in the Iowa state capitol. 

The legislation is certain to prompt legal battles. Shortly after Reynolds's office announced the governor's intent to sign the so-called heartbeat bill, Planned Parenthood of the Heartland said that it would file a lawsuit seeking to block the bill.

ADVERTISEMENT
"I am here to tell her: Gov. Reynolds, if you sign this bill, Planned Parenthood will see you in court," Suzanna de Baca, the president and CEO of Planned Parenthood of the Heartland, said in a statement.

"We will challenge this law with absolutely everything we have on behalf of our patients because Iowa will not go back."

The measure would require women seeking an abortion to undergo an ultrasound before the procedure, in order to detect whether the fetus has a heartbeat. Iowa's legislature passed the measure this week. 

Opponents of the legislation say that it would prohibit abortions before many women even find out that they are pregnant. 

Other states have tried to implement similar restrictions on abortions, but were blocked from doing so by courts. The Supreme Court decided in the 1973 Roe v. Wade ruling that women have the right to terminate pregnancies until a fetus is viable. But conservative state lawmakers have been instituting new laws that could prompt a new Supreme Court case — and a potential challenge to Roe.