Iowa lawmakers have passed another piece of legislation to protect preborn children. Only one more step is needed for this latest measure to become law.
On Tuesday, the Iowa Senate gave its stamp of approval to Senate File 471, a bill that would ban abortions at 20 weeks' gestation. Passage required a second vote after the lower chamber made a change. Jenifer Bowen of Iowa Right to Life explains what happened.
"What was added by the Iowa House was a provision that would add a 72-hour waiting period to the bill," she shares, "and so apparently Iowa will be one of six states that have such a provision."
The three-day waiting period is designed to give a woman seeking an abortion more time to contemplate her decision. The House passed that provision and the Senate did likewise once the bill returned to that chamber.
The key provision in the bill places a new restriction on abortions. "It is similar to legislation that's been passing in other states over the last number of years," explains Bowen, "where abortion at 20 weeks and beyond will be banned ... with the exception of if [the mother's] life is in danger."
The primary opponent to SF-471 was Planned Parenthood of the Heartland, which still contends it's up to the woman to decide – even though research shows the unborn baby suffers excruciating pain during the abortion.
The bill is headed to Republican Governor Terry Branstad's desk. He is expected to sign it.