Lifestyle

Abortion law, state by state, July 2022

Very few things in the world are black and white.  Should you take advantage of a Jackpot Capital bonus or should you not?  There is no one right answer.  The same is true with Abortion laws.

When we are talking about this state being “pro-abortion” and that state being “anti-abortion”, the reality is that different states have different regulations and almost no state is “abortion until the third trimester” or “no abortion after conception”.

Note: We are “calling” Washington, DC a state in terms of counts.  So the total count of “states” is 51, not 50.  It just makes the discussion easier.

Summary of the laws

  • Allowing abortions (31 states)
    • 10 states, no restrictions
    • 19 States, fetal viability
    • 2 States, 15 weeks
  • Abortions are illegal (20 States)
    • 6 States, 6 weeks (heartbeat laws)
    • 14 States, abortion is illegal at conception (morning after pill is not even an option)

Which states allow abortion until 9 months?

  1. Alaska, no restrictions
  2. Colorado, no restrictions
  3. Hawaii, no restrictions
  4. New Jersey, no restrictions
  5. New Mexico, no restrictions
  6. New York, no restrictions
  7. Oregon, no restrictions
  8. Vermont, no restrictions
  9. West Virginia, no restrictions
  10. Washington DC, no restrictions

Which states allow abortion until the viability of the fetus (23 – 24 weeks)?

There have been cases where a fetus has survived at 21 weeks, so the cut off of “fetal viability” changes as medical advances are made.

  1. California – fetal viability
  2. Connecticut – fetal viability
  3. Delaware – fetal viability
  4. Illinois – 24 weeks
  5. Maine – fetal viability
  6. Maryland – fetal viability
  7. Massachusetts – 24 weeks
  8. Michigan – fetal viability
  9. Minnesota – fetal viability
  10. Montana – fetal viability
  11. Nebraska – fetal viability (except in some local communities)
  12. Nevada – 24 weeks
  13. New Hampshire – 24 weeks
  14. North Carolina – fetal viability
  15. Pennsylvannia – 24 weeks
  16. Rhode Island – 24 weeks
  17. Virginia – 27 weeks
  18. Washington – fetal viability
  19. Wisconsin – 22 weeks

 

Which states allow abortion until 15 weeks (ability to test for Down Syndrome and other genetic tests)?

  1. Arizona – Legal until 15 weeks (Effective September 2022)
  2. Florida – 15 weeks

Which states allow abortion until 6 weeks (heartbeat laws)?

  1. Georgia – heartbeat law
  2. Iowa – heartbeat law
  3. Kansas – 22 weeks, but wants to be 6 weeks.
  4. Ohio
  5. South Carolina
  6. Texas

Which states do not allow any abortions

With minors below the age of 14, it will become a case-by-case basis.  It falls into the category of “Woman’s life is in danger”, but then since it is not explicitly written in the law, it causes complications and uncertainty.

But as with any other poorly defined law, on Monday with woman A, it will be okay, but then on Tuesday with woman B, it will not be okay.

Right now, the general consensus is that 10-year-old (or younger) rape or incest victims fall under the category of “woman’s life is at risk”.  It is unclear if 11 – 13-year-olds fall into this category.

As for rape or incest, there has to be a police report.  If you are unwilling to file a police report, it will be hard to get an abortion for that reason.  With a minor, in cases of rape, it is required by law for the abortion doctor to file a police report.  Abortion remains are compared to the rapist, and the rapist goes to jail regardless of whether or not the mom or child “want” to press charges.

  1. Alabama
    1. Exception for woman’s life at risk.
    2. No exception for rape or incest
  2. Arkansas
    1. Exception for woman’s life at risk.
    2. No exception for rape or incest
  3. Idaho
    1. Exception for woman’s life at risk.
    2. Exception for rape and incest
  4. Indiana – 22 weeks (wants to be illegal)
    1. Exception for woman’s life at risk.
    2. Exceptions for rape and incest.
  5. Kentucky 
    1. Exception for woman’s life at risk or major organs.
    2. No exception for rape or incest
  6. Louisiana (wants to ban abortion)
  7. Mississippi
    1. Exception for woman’s life at risk.
    2. Exception for rape or incest
  8. Missouri
    1. Exception for woman’s life at risk.
    2. No exception for rape or incest
  9. North Dakota 
    1. Exception for woman’s life at risk.
    2. Exception for rape or incest
  10. Oklahoma 
    1. Exception for woman’s life at risk.
    2. No exception for rape or incest.
  11. South Dakota 
    1. Exceptions for woman’s life at risk.
    2. No exception for rape or incest
  12. Tennessee 
    1. Exceptions for woman’s life at risk.
    2. No exception for rape or incest
  13. Utah
    1. Exceptions for woman’s life at risk.
    2. No exceptions for rape or incest
  14. Wyoming
    1. Exceptions for woman’s life at risk.
    2. Exception for rape and incest.

A woman with a dead fetus could not get an abortion (Poland)

This is a case that happened in Poland.  A woman was carrying twins.  One of the fetuses died, so the doctor wanted to abort the dead fetus in order to save the life of the other fetus and the mother.  In Poland, even in this case, the woman was refused an abortion.  The result was that both the 2nd fetus and the mother died.

10 year old rape victim (Brazil)

A 10-year-old girl was pregnant due to rape.  Although abortions are legal in cases of rape or incest, the Judge and prosecutor were strongly encouraging the girl to keep the baby.   Video of this case caused national concern in Brazil and international uproar that the courts finally allowed the girl to get an abortion.

This is the comparison case that many people talked about when talking about 10-year-old girls getting pregnant due to rape.

This scenario also happened in Ohio, except the 10-year-old girl went to Indiana to get an abortion.  But if the anti-abortion legislation passes, getting an abortion in Indiana will no longer be an option.

Opinion: Will national abortion laws be implemented, either for or against abortions?

When people talk about abortions, they talk about extreme laws.

In 10 states, there are no restrictions on abortions.  Even people who generally support abortions think that is crazy.

On the other extreme, are the 14 states that ban abortion from conception, with some not even having exceptions for rape and incest.  Even people who are pro-abortion have a problem with this because it could potentially include birth control pills and the morning after pill (rape cases).

The rest of the country falls in the middle.

19 States have fetal viability (general standard of Roe Vs. Wade era).  Technically it is defined as 22 – 24 weeks, but there have been cases where a fetus has survived from 21 weeks.  Some states in this range, actually have an exact week defined.  The two states have a 15-week cutoff.  This position could be considered the “middle of the road” toward the pro-abortion side.

6 States have 6-week heartbeat laws.  This could be considered the middle of the road toward the anti-abortion side, because it allows birth control pills, the morning after pills (rape cases), and cases of “you missed your period, you immediately did something”.

43% of women have an abortion before the first 6 weeks.

79% before the first 9 weeks (cut off for medical abortions)

90% of abortions happen during the first 12 weeks.

92% performed before the first 13 weeks.

95% performed during the first 15 weeks. (10 – 14 weeks, abdominal ultrasound can check for major abnormalities, including down syndrome and other genetic disorders through a nuchal translucency test).

Of the last 5% of abortions, 4% happen before 20 weeks (99%).  The old cutoff date for detecting Down Syndrome or other major genetic abnormalities.

As for the last 1%, I can only make guesses as to why they were so late in seeking assistance.

Opinion: The nuchal translucency test came into widespread use starting in 2003.  So the major reason why many “middle of the road” people did not want abortions illegal until 20 weeks (could not determine major birth defects before that), is not really valid now.  So all of the states who have abortions until 20-24 weeks could change it to 15 weeks, and it would cover the majority of “middle of the road”  people where these outlier cases are covered.

Should people be concerned about abortion laws?

On the local level, most definitely.  This is especially true if legislation is going through your state government.

But in terms of the federal level, the Supreme Court rules that Abortion laws are at the state level, so if either side (pro-abortion or anti-abortion) tried to make federal law, it would be struck down by the Supreme Court (unless I am missing something).

But a bill has passed the House:  H.R.3755 — 117th Congress (2021-2022) This bill says abortions are legal through fetal viability (20 – 24 weeks).  But since it has to pass the Senate above 60 votes, it will not pass the senate (at the current time).  Would it pass if it was changed to 15 weeks (after the abdominal ultrasound that can detect most major fetal problems)?  Possibly.