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Here Are All The Times Abortion Access Was Threatened In The US This Year

Since the start of 2016, 28* states have considered legislation that would limit women's access to abortion.

Abortion has been a fundamental, Constitutionally-protected right since the Supreme Court ruled in Roe v. Wade in 1973.

But since then, access to abortion has been deliberately stripped in states. This month, the Supreme Court is announcing their ruling on Whole Woman's Health v. Hellerstedt, the most important abortion case in decades that will determine access to abortion for millions of women across the United States.

Depending on the outcome of the Supreme Court case, abortion restricting laws across the country will either fall or be emboldened.

Abortion is a very safe and common procedure. Approximately one in three women in America will have an abortion in their lifetime.

That hasn't stopped politicians from finding new methods to block access. Pro-abortion groups call these “TRAP” laws — the Targeted Regulation of Abortion Providers.

state laws restricting abortion map america

Robert Rodriguez

The laws are increasingly creative. Lawmakers cannot outright ban abortions, but they have a handful of tricks they can use.

Some states go a more direct route, banning a particular method of abortion or banning abortion after a certain week in a woman's pregnancy.

Indirect methods include requiring abortion providers to have admitting privileges at a hospital and meet the regulations of an ambulatory surgical center — which is at the heart of the Whole Woman's case from Texas.

Lawmakers can target women by adding waiting periods and “informed consent” scripts, which are often full of factually incorrect statements. Indiana introduced a new twist requiring that women bury or cremate aborted fetuses, which are often smaller than a peapod.

Lawmakers can target doctors, like they tried to do in Oklahoma by criminalizing providers. The governor vetoed that law.

And they can make doctors follow odd medical practices. Arizona made doctors use outdated FDA guidelines and Utah dumbfounded doctors saying they had to provide fetal anesthesia. That doesn't medically exist.

Since last year's undercover Planned Parenthood videos, many states have introduced legislation to limit the transfer of fetal tissue, which has slowed research that would save lives. Legislation against Planned Parenthood has also continued.

There have been over 50 instances of what's considered anti-abortion legislation in 28* states so far in 2016, according to Elite Daily's analysis. We will continue tracking these laws here and on a Twitter account.

Here is each piece that has been considered:

Alabama

  • Governor Robert Bentley signed a law banning clinics from operating within 2,000 feet of a public school
  • Governor Robert Bentley signed a ban on the D&E procedure for second-trimester abortion
  • The state House and Senate passed a bill making the sale of fetal tissue to researchers a felony
  • A bill was introduced that would ban abortion after a fetal heartbeat is detected
  • A bill to legally define a fetus as a “person” failed to make a vote in the state House
  • The state attorney general dropped an appeal for a law requiring that abortion providers have hospital admitting privileges

Alaska

  • The state House and Senate passed a bill blocking Planned Parenthood from teaching sex ed in schools
  • A bill to limit late-term abortions was introduced in the state Senate

Arizona

  • Governor Doug Ducey signed a bill requiring providers to use old FDA guidelines for medication abortion
  • Governor Doug Ducey signed a bill banning abortion providers from transferring fetal tissue to researchers
  • Governor Doug Ducey signed a law banning state employees from donating to abortion providers through paycheck deduction
  • Governor Doug Ducey signed a bill that makes it easier to keep Medicaid funding from Planned Parenthood

Arkansas

  • The Supreme Court refused to hear a ban on abortion after 12 weeks, blocking the ban

Florida

  • An appellate court approved a law instituting a 24-hour waiting period
    • The state Supreme Court suspended the waiting period to review the law
  • Governor Rick Scott signed a law defunding Planned Parenthood and requiring that abortion providers have hospital admitting privileges and that facilities meet the standards of ambulatory surgical centers
    • Planned Parenthood has sued to stop the restrictions
    • A federal judge blocked the law defunding organizations that provide abortions

Georgia

  • Governor Nathan Deal signed a bill allowing state funding for crisis pregnancy centers, which discourage abortions
  • The state House passed a bill to collect data on women under age 17 who get abortions
    • The state Senate expanded the bill so that doctors would have to report abortions to the state
  • The state House passed a bill banning the sale of fetal tissue

Idaho

  • Governor C. L. “Butch” Otter signed a law banning the sale or donation of fetal tissue

Indiana

  • Governor Mike Pence signed a bill banning abortions on the basis of race, sex or disability. The bill also requires doctors to have hospital admitting privileges and restricts fetal tissue donation. The bill also requires that remains of miscarried or aborted fetuses be buried or cremated. The bill also requires women to listen to a fetal heartbeat and get an ultrasound 18 hours before an abortion.
    • A judge blocked the law banning abortion on the basis of disability and the burial/cremation measure
  • Rep. Curt Nisly to introduce bill to outlaw and criminalize all forms of abortion

Kansas

  • Governor Sam Brownback defunded Planned Parenthood
    • Planned Parenthood sued the state in May
  • An appeals court blocked a ban on the D&E procedure for second-trimester abortion

Kentucky

  • Governor Matt Bevin sued Planned Parenthood for offering abortions
  • Governor Matt Bevin signed an “informed consent” bill requiring women to have a face-to-face consultation at least 24 hours before an abortion
  • The state Senate passed a bill requiring doctors to perform an ultrasound and describe it before performing an abortion
  • The state Senate passed a bill requiring abortion facilities to meet the standards of an ambulatory surgical center and have hospital admitting privileges within 50 miles

Louisiana

  • Governor John Bel Edwards signed a law instituting a 72-hour waiting period
  • Governor John Bel Edwards signed a law banning the D&E procedure for second-trimester abortion
  • A court approved a law requiring abortion providers to have hospital admitting privileges within 30 miles
  • The House passed a resolution to study a procedure to reverse medication abortion

Minnesota

  • The House considered a bill requiring abortion facilities to meet the standards of an outpatient surgical center
  • The House considered defunding Planned Parenthood
    • Governor Mark Dayton vowed to veto the bill

Mississippi

  • Governor Phil Bryant signed a bill banning the D&E procedure for second-trimester abortion
  • A bill was introduced that would require aborted fetuses to be cremated or buried
  • Governor Phil Bryant signed a bill defunding Planned Parenthood
  • The Supreme Court blocked a law requiring abortion providers to have hospital admitting privileges

Missouri

  • The state budget defunded Planned Parenthood
    • Governor Jay Nixon said he is reviewing it
  • The House passed a ban on the donation of fetal tissue
  • The House passed a bill requiring both parents of a minor to be notified of an abortion
  • The House passed a bill granting “personhood” to a fetus

New Hampshire

  • The Senate did not pass a bill repealing the buffer zone around clinics
  • The Senate did not pass a bill that would allow the state to collect data on abortions
  • The Executive Council voted to fund Planned Parenthood

New Mexico

  • The Senate rejected a ban on abortion after 20 weeks
  • The House voted down a bill that would increase oversight of abortion providers

North Dakota

  • The Supreme Court refused to hear a ban on abortion after six weeks, blocking the ban

Ohio

  • The state Senate passed a bill requiring aborted fetuses to be cremated or buried
  • Governor John Kasich signed a law defunding Planned Parenthood
    • A federal judge blocked the defunding
  • A group proposed an amendment to the state constitution to criminalize abortion
    • The state attorney general rejected this proposal
  • State House and Senate passed a bill banning abortion after six weeks
  • State House and Senate passed a bill banning abortion after 20 weeks

Oklahoma

  • Governor Mary Fallin vetoed a bill that would strip doctors of their medical licenses for performing abortions
  • A state court judge approved a bill requiring abortion providers to have hospital admitting privileges
    • State Supreme Court permanently blocked admitting privileges requirement
  • The state Supreme Court upheld a law requiring doctors to follow outdated FDA guidelines for medication abortion
  • Governor Mary Fallin signed a bill requiring the state Department of Health to make pro-life materials

Pennsylvania

  • Governor Tom Wolf stopped a bill that would ban abortion after 20 weeks
    • This bill was revived for consideration in the Senate and would also ban the D&E procedure for second-trimester abortion
  • The state House passed a bill banning abortion after 20 weeks and criminalizing the D&E procedure for second-trimester abortion

South Carolina

  • Governor Nikki Haley signed a bill banning abortion after 19 weeks
  • The state House is considering a bill requiring aborted fetuses to be cremated or buried

South Dakota

  • Governor Dennis Daugaard signed a law banning abortion after 19 weeks
  • Governor Dennis Daugaard signed a law requiring doctors to tell patients that the medication abortion is reversible
  • Governor Dennis Daugaard signed a law banning the sale, acquisition or use of aborted fetal tissue for research

Tennessee

  • Governor Bill Haslam signed a bill increasing reporting on fetal tissue and prohibiting reimbursement for preparing, shipping or transferring aborted fetal tissue
  • Representative Rick Womick introduced and withdrew a bill that would require women get an ultrasound before an abortion

Texas

  • Governor Greg Abbott added a directive that abortion clinics have to bury or cremate fetal remains
    • State announced plans to implement in December
    • The Center for Reproductive Rights sued the state over this
  • Rep. Byron Cook proposed a law requiring burial or cremation of fetal remains after abortion or miscarriage
  • Rep. Matt Schaefer proposed removing the exception to the 20-week abortion ban for severe fetal anomalies
  • Rep. Charles Schwertner proposed a bill banning a form of late-term abortion already banned federally as well as banning fetal tissue donations to unauthorized institutions
  • Texas Health and Human Services Commission to cut Planned Parenthood funding through Medicaid
    • Planned Parenthood sued to stop this

Utah

  • Governor Gary Herbert signed a law requiring doctors to provide anesthesia to a woman getting an abortion after 20 weeks
  • Rep. Keven Stratton and Sen. Curt Bramble plan to introduce legislation requiring doctors to tell women medication abortions can be reversed (research does not support that)

Virginia

  • The House postponed a bill banning abortion after 20 weeks
  • Governor Terry McAuliffe vetoed a bill to defund Planned Parenthood

West Virginia

  • Legislators overrode the governor's veto to ban the D&E procedure for second-trimester abortion

Wisconsin

  • State Attorney General Brad Schimel asked the U.S. Supreme Court to reinstate a law requiring abortion providers to have hospital admitting privileges

*Last updated: 1/3/17

Citations: Vox, The Atlantic, Washington Post

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Alexandra Svokos

Editor

Alexandra is the Senior News Editor at Elite Daily. She previously worked at HuffPost and has been published in Vox, Glamour, Refinery 29, Mic, Cosmopolitan and Quartz. Find her on Twitter / FB @asvokos and at tinyletter.com/asvokos
Alexandra is the Senior News Editor at Elite Daily. She previously worked at HuffPost and has been published in Vox, Glamour, Refinery 29, Mic, Cosmopolitan and Quartz. Find her on Twitter / FB @asvokos and at tinyletter.com/asvokos

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