Idaho's new 'brutal' anti-abortion law sparks widespread outrage

Idaho's new 'brutal' anti-abortion law sparks widespread outrage
Abortion rights activists in St. Paul, Minnesota in 2019, Lorie Shaull
The Right Wing

Lawmakers in the state of Idaho late Monday afternoon completed passage of legislation that will allow a woman’s blood relatives to sue if she has or attempts to have an abortion. Specifically the law mentions the man who impregnated her, a grandparent, aunt, uncle, or “a sibling of the preborn child.”

The bill is “a six-week abortion ban modeled after the Texas law that has eliminated access to the procedure before many people know they are pregnant,” reports The 19th. “The vote puts Idaho on the path to becoming the second state with a six-week ban in place.”

It now goes to Republican Governor Brad Little for his signature or veto.

SB 1309, the “FETAL HEARTBEAT PREBORN CHILD PROTECTION ACT,” in part reads: “Any female upon whom an abortion has been attempted or performed, the father of the preborn child, a grandparent of the preborn child, a sibling of the preborn child, or an aunt or uncle of the preborn child may” sue the doctor. Rape, incest, and medical emergency cases are not included, but there are still roadblocks in those cases.

The bill is so brutal that if a girl is the victim of incestuous rape, by, say, her father, her father or mother have to report the rape to the police and then give the doctor a police report. If the girl’s mother is deceased or divorced (these situations are conveniently not mentioned in the bill) the very man who raped his own daughter has to report himself to the police and the doctor has to be given a copy of the police report:

Oberlin political science professor Miranda Yaver, PhD, responded to the legislation, saying: “When I teach repro[ductive] rights in Con[stitutional] Law, I give students a set of hypothetical abortion restrictions, ranging from modest to extreme, & ask whether undue burdens under [Planned Parenthood v.] Casey,” the 1992 Supreme Court law that upheld 1973’s Roe v. Wade.

“1 involves the man suing to prevent an abortion. My students usually find that inconceivable. Not so anymore,” Dr. Yaver laments.

Georgia State Law law professor and political scientist Anthony Michael Kreis explains why this is such dangerous legislation:

“I have no legal interest in my sister’s womb. I should not have a private right of action against her for decisions that do not harm me,” he writes. “This legislation is not only an affront to constitutional rights but a return to the law of coverture.”

(For those unfamiliar with the term, Harvard Business School notes: “During most of American history, women’s lives in most states were circumscribed by common law brought to North America by English colonists. These marriage and property laws, or “coverture,” stipulated that a married woman did not have a separate legal existence from her husband. A married woman or feme covert was a dependent, like an underage child or a slave, and could not own property in her own name or control her own earnings, except under very specific circumstances.”)

“Laws should not treat women like chattel. Yet, here we are,” Kreis added.

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