May 18, 2023

North Carolina Legislators Override Veto to Pass 12-Week Abortion Ban

On May 16, North Carolina legislators voted to override Democratic Gov. Roy Cooper's veto of a 12-week abortion ban.

The override votes were strictly along party lines, with Republicans voting as a block in favor of the pro-life law. The House voted 72-48, and the Senate voted 30-20.

The new law, taking effect July 1, will include exceptions for when the mother's life is at risk. In cases of rape or incest, abortion will remain legal until the 20th week of pregnancy. If the child is diagnosed with a life-threatening anomaly, abortion will be legal until 24 weeks.

North Carolina's current law bans abortion at 20 weeks.

The new law also creates a 72-hour waiting period after a mother first visits an abortionist, and it requires the first dose of the abortion pill regimen to be taken in the presence of a physician.

Finally, the law creates several pro-life policies that benefit women. It establishes eight weeks of paid parental leave for teachers and other state employees, and it provides $180 million for initiatives such as child care and foster care.