Shortly after last year’s Washington Supreme Court ruling, South Carolina passed a law banning abortions after the sixth week of pregnancy. This law, the so-called Heartbeat attack, is now rejected. “We believe that the right to privacy as enshrined in our Constitution extends to women’s decisions to have an abortion,” the court said.
The US Supreme Court followed similar reasoning in 1973 in Roe v. valley. This gave American women the right to have an abortion. But in June of last year, a historic turning point followed: the ruling in Roe v. Wade was wrong in the federal court and the states were given a free hand to legislate on the matter as they saw fit.
Many conservative states, especially in the South and Center, have legislation in place that makes access to abortion more difficult, if not impossible. These laws have been temporarily banned in recent months due to extreme urgency, pending substantive decisions. The South Carolina Supreme Court was the first to rule on Thursday.
“This is a major victory for legal abortion protection in the South,” said Planned Parenthood, which owns multiple abortion clinics.
However, this ruling does not appear to resolve the case in South Carolina. For example, the Supreme Court says the right to privacy can be “limited” provided it is done in a “reasonable” way. This opens up the possibility of any new restrictions imposed at the state level.
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