GOP Mass. governor repeals antiquated abortion ban

GOP Mass. governor repeals antiquated abortion ban
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Massachusetts Gov. Charlie Baker (R) signed a bill Friday repealing an unenforced, 173-year-old statewide ban on abortion. 

The Negating Archaic Statutes Targeting Young Women Act wipes a number of anti-abortion laws off of the books, though many have been ignored for decades. 


NARAL Pro-Choice Massachusetts, which pushed for the bill, said the intent is to safeguard access to abortion in the state given the rising uncertainty about the future of Roe v. Wade. 

"This is a massive victory for reproductive freedom, and ensures that no matter what happens to [Roe v. Wade], abortion will always be legal in MA," the group tweeted Friday. 

Among the laws being repealed — all unenforced and passed before Roe v. Wade legalized abortion — are restrictions on contraception, adultery and "illegally procuring a miscarriage." 

"Today, we formally repeal a number of antiquated laws, some of which could lead to denying young women reproductive health care," Baker tweeted Friday.  

Other states are also reviewing unenforced abortion bans in case such laws take effect should the Supreme Court overturn Roe v. Wade. 

Such discussions have taken place following President TrumpDonald John TrumpWarren defends, Buttigieg attacks in debate that shrank the field Five takeaways from the Democratic debate in Ohio Democrats debate in Ohio: Who came out on top? MORE's nomination of Judge Brett Kavanaugh to fill a vacancy on the Supreme Court. 

While it's not clear where Kavanaugh stands on Roe v. Wade, anti-abortion groups have cheered his nomination and Trump has said in the past he would nominate justices who overturn the decision.