Republican Gov. Phil Bryant signed House Bill 1510, the most restrictive abortion law in the country, banning abortions after 15 weeks of pregnancy. He said, “We are saving more of the unborn than any state in America, and what better thing can we do?”
I was proud to sign House Bill 1510 this afternoon. I am committed to making Mississippi the safest place in America for an unborn child, and this bill will help us achieve that goal. pic.twitter.com/O0O4QeILLx
— Phil Bryant (@PhilBryantMS) March 19, 2018
In response to negative news reports about the bill, Bryant tweeted:
I pray today we have saved the first life of an unborn child in Mississippi. https://t.co/G7YNINWGIL
— Phil Bryant (@PhilBryantMS) March 20, 2018
It’s a great day in Mississippi as we move to make our state the safest place in the nation for an unborn child. I was proud to stand with members of the pro-life community as Gov. @PhilBryantMS signed the ban on abortions after 15 weeks of gestation. pic.twitter.com/xWQNgjyTUn
— Tate Reeves (@tatereeves) March 19, 2018
The law’s only exceptions include health problems making the baby “incompatible with life” outside of the womb at full term, or if a pregnant woman’s life or a “major bodily function” is threatened by pregnancy. Exemptions do not include pregnancies resulting from rape and incest.
Within an hour, the Jackson Women’s Health Organization, sued the state arguing the law is unconstitutional. Its lawsuit is being handled by the New York- based organization, the Center of Reproductive Rights. It states, “Under decades of United States Supreme Court precedent, the state of Mississippi cannot ban abortion prior to viability, regardless of what exceptions are provided to the ban.”
House Speaker Philip Gunn told The Associated Press,
The winners (today) are those babies that are in the womb, first and foremost. Those are the ones we’re trying to protect. I don’t know if you can put any value on human life. We are all about fighting to protect the unborn. Whatever challenges we have to take on to do that, is something we’re willing to do.”
Conservative groups who helped draft the bill include the Mississippi Center for Public Policy and Alliance Defending Freedom.