New Abortion Restrictions Fail to Pass in Two GOP-led States

April 28, 2023

Bills to severely restrict abortion each failed by one vote in both South Carolina and Nebraska—two states with Republican-majority legislatures.

In South Carolina HB 5399 originally started out as a total ban on abortion at the moment of conception with no exceptions for rape or incest. It failed for a third time by a 22-21 vote in the GOP-led state Senate after its five women lawmakers filibustered the bill that had passed in the state House.

Altogether, six Republicans helped block motions to end debate and defeated any chance the bill passes this year. Currently, abortion remains legal through 22 weeks in South Carolina.

In Nebraska, Bill  626, which would have banned abortions at six weeks of pregnancy, failed by one vote short of the 33 required to break a filibuster.

The failed vote was due to an abstention by State Senator Merv Riepe (R), who had initially co-signed the bill. Earlier this year, however, the former hospital administrator-turned lawmaker raised concerns that six weeks might not give women enough time to know if they were pregnant.

Abortion also remains legal for up to 22 weeks in Nebraska. 

“This really shows that even in red states winning is still possible,” Planned Parenthood Action Fund’s Ianthe Metzge said of the actions in the two states. “We do know that banning abortion is unpopular.”

PHOTO: State Senate Chamber, Columbia SC

Source: Billy Hathorn

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