Indiana Republicans keep struggling over abortion ban

INDIANAPOLIS — Indiana Republican legislators delayed the beginning of debate on a proposed abortion ban Thursday amid days of public division over how tightly the legislation ought to cover any exceptions for rape or incest victims.

The Republican-dominated state Senate was set to take up probably dozens of attainable amendments to the invoice, however that debate was delayed by greater than three hours as GOP senators met privately after having been break up between those that those that help rape and incest exceptions and those that need to prohibit abortions besides to guard the pregnant lady’s life.

Indiana has one of many first Republican-run state legislatures to debate tighter abortion legal guidelines for the reason that U.S. Supreme Court final month overturned Roe v. Wade. Its debate comes as a number of states are additionally within the midst of court docket fights over whether or not tighter abortion restrictions can take impact.

The Indiana Republican disagreement over the abortion ban proposal contrasts with West Virginia, the place the GOP-dominated House of Delegates voted Wednesday in favor of a sweeping abortion ban that features exceptions for victims of rape and incest, in addition to for medical emergencies.

The proposal first launched final week by Indiana Senate Republican leaders would prohibit abortions from the time a fertilized egg implants in a uterus with restricted exceptions, together with a requirement {that a} lady or lady searching for an abortion due to rape or incest to signal an affidavit testifying to the assault.

Anti-abortion activists have roundly assailed the Indiana proposal as too lenient with its exceptions and missing sufficient enforcement measures.

A high legislative Republican, Senate Majority Leader Mark Messmer, voted towards the measure throughout a committee meeting Tuesday, lamenting the “near impossibility of threading the perfect needle” on the difficulty throughout a brief particular legislative session that GOP Gov. Eric Holcomb initially referred to as to handle a tax rebate plan.

Holcomb has averted saying whether or not he supported the proposed abortion ban and stayed out of public view throughout demonstrations Monday and Tuesday that drew hundreds of competing anti-abortion and abortion-rights supporters to the Statehouse as a legislative listening to on the invoice occurred.

The Indiana proposal adopted the political firestorm over a 10-year-old rape sufferer who traveled to the state from neighboring Ohio to finish her being pregnant. The case of the Ohio lady gained large consideration when an Indianapolis physician mentioned the kid needed to go to Indiana as a result of Ohio banned abortions on the first detectable “fetal heartbeat” after the Supreme Court’s abortion determination.

The invoice cleared the committee on a 7-5 vote Tuesday with two Republicans saying they disliked the proposal because it stood and solely voted to advance it in hopes of the total Senate making modifications.

Senate Democratic Leader Greg Taylor mentioned Wednesday it was clear Republicans had not reached an settlement on a invoice to advance to the House for consideration.

“I think they’re having problems,” Taylor mentioned. “I can’t speak to whether or not anything’s gonna pass.”

Republican Sen. Sue Glick of LaGrange, the abortion invoice’s sponsor, mentioned she was “not exactly” pleased with the proposal after the committee including provisions beneath which medical doctors might face felony felony fees for performing an unlawful abortion, together with limiting the time interval permitting abortions in circumstances of rape and incest to eight weeks of being pregnant for ladies ages 16 or older and 12 weeks for these youthful than 16.

Glick acknowledged this week that there was an opportunity Republicans wouldn’t have the ability to attain consensus earlier than the particular session’s Aug. 14 deadline to adjourn.

“If we can’t reach that result, there is a statute in Indiana we’ll live with until it will change in the future,” Glick mentioned Monday. “If that decision can’t be made in a week or two weeks’ time, then we’ll come back in January and start again.”


Arleigh Rodgers is a corps member for the Associated Press/Report for America Statehouse News Initiative. Report for America is a nonprofit nationwide service program that locations journalists in native newsrooms to report on undercovered points. Follow Rodgers on Twitter at

Back to top button