The Missouri Senate voted early Thursday to ban abortions eight weeks into pregnancy, even in cases of rape, incest or human trafficking, with criminal penalties for non-complying doctors that could send them to prison for up to 15 years.
The measure, passed 24-10 by the Republican supermajority after day-and-night-long negotiations, places Missouri in the vanguard of states including Alabama, Georgia, Ohio and Kentucky that have passed some of the nation’s most restrictive abortion laws. It also serves as another possible legal vehicleto challenge the landmark Roe v Wade casebefore a newly conservative Supreme Court.
The bill has a “trigger” provision banning abortion completely if the Supreme Court overturns Roe, which established a woman’s right to the procedure without undue government interference. It also contains redundant restrictions that would remain in effect if the two-month threshold were thrown out by the courts, as has happened in other states.
The bill will now need one more vote in the House,where it passed in February and is all but certain to be approved again. It will then go to Gov. Mike Parson for his signature.