Democrats in NC House, Senate introduce legislation that would codify abortion protections into state law
North Carolina Democrats introduced legislation on Thursday that would codify abortion protections into state law. The move comes as Republicans are working on legislation to restrict the medical procedure even further.
The bill was filed Wednesday in both the House and Senate and would prevent the state from creating any barriers that could restrict a patient’s ability to choose whether to get an abortion before fetal viability (often between 24 and 28 weeks).
Current state law bans almost all abortions after 20 weeks. There are exceptions for urgent medical emergencies, but rape or incest are not included.
The prospects for passage are extremely low, but Democratic Senate Minority Leader Dan Blue said “it’s the idea that’s important” and that it’s “an important idea whose time has come.”
Democratic Sen. Sydney Batch said Democrats are unwilling to compromise on restrictions beyond the current 20 weeks, saying, “This is our baseline.”
Republicans are one seat shy of a veto-proof supermajority in the General Assembly and would need some Democratic support to override a likely veto by Gov. Roy Cooper on any further restrictions.
Democratic House Minority Leader Robert Reives told reporters he’s not concerned about any Democrats joining Republicans to override a veto by Cooper on abortion restrictions.
Batch said, “going down [from 20 weeks] is not what we’re here for.”