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September 20, 2021

20 States File Brief Against South Carolina Heartbeat Law

IL Attorney General Kwame Raoul (D)
On Sept. 15, the attorneys general from 20 states and Washington D.C. filed a joint amicus brief in support of a pro-abortion lawsuit challenging a South Dakota heartbeat law.

The South Carolina Fetal Heartbeat and Protection from Abortion Act requires that women first receive ultrasounds before having an abortion. If the ultrasound detects the unborn baby's heartbeat, aborting that baby would be illegal. A fetal heartbeat becomes detectable around the six-week mark.

Planned Parenthood predictably filed a lawsuit challenging the law after it was signed in February. It has been blocked from enforcement pending the decision of Dobbs v. Jackson Women's Health Organization, which is slated to be heard by the Supreme Court this fall.

The brief was co-signed by Illinois Attorney General Kwame Raoul. Additionally, it was signed by the Attorneys General from Virginia, California, Colorado, Connecticut, Hawaii, Maine, Maryland, Massachusetts, Michigan, Minnesota, Nevada, New Jersey, New Mexico, New York, Oregon, Pennsylvania, Rhode Island, Vermont, Washington, and the District of Columbia.

“South Carolina’s law prevents women from accessing essential medical care, potentially resulting in permanent long-term health impacts or even fatalities,” Raoul said in a press release. “The restrictive laws being enacted by states like South Carolina do not stop abortions. They jeopardize women’s lives by making it more difficult to receive safe abortions. Women have the right to make their own decisions about abortion care in consultation with their health care providers, and I will continue to oppose measures that deprive them of that right.”

Abortion restrictions do not make women less safe. Abortion providers who neglect abortion laws make women less safe. Women who attempt dangerous self-administered abortion procedures are risking the safety of themselves and their children. Abortion restrictions simply acknowledge the humanity of unborn children and seek to provide them the protection they deserve.