In the closing days of session, Republican lawmakers passed the nation’s strictest abortion ban at just six weeks, which is before many women even know they are pregnant. This ban is clearly unconstitutional and the State of Iowa will have to pay thousands of dollars in litigation fees over the next several years as the legislation moves through the courts.
This bill will also harm the University of Iowa’s Carver College of Medicine, where students will not be able to complete their training if this legislation were to go into effect. Iowa already ranks next to last in the nation for Obstetrics and Gynecology (OBG) physicians per capita, and two-thirds of our 99 counties currently do not have an OBG physician. This means fewer women will receive care, and there will be an increase in negative health outcomes and complications due to reduced access to these types of physicians.
The bill, Senate File 359, started out as a bill banning the selling of fetal tissue, something that is already banned by federal law. However, Republicans underhandedly added the six week abortion ban to the bill at the last minute.