Abortion clinics in multiple states where pro-life laws are now, or will soon be, in effect ceased operations Friday after the Supreme Court overturned its Roe v. Wade decision.
In a 6-3 decision for Dobbs v. Jackson Women’s Health Organization, the court upheld a Mississippi law that bans abortion procedures after 15 weeks or pregnancy, ruling that the Constitution does not protect a woman’s right to kill her unborn child. The ruling lets states individually decide how they will regulate abortion, if at all, opening the door for at least 26 states with pro-life governments to enact new limits on abortion.
In some states that already have pro-life laws on the books, including so-called trigger laws that will now go into effect after the court’s decision, abortion clinics have already halted scheduled abortion procedures and closed their doors.
Texas, for example, has a law that will ban most abortions from the moment of conception forward, excepting medical emergencies where the life of the mother is at risk. State Attorney General Ken Paxton (R) announced Friday that the law will go into effect in 30 days after the court issues its judgement in Dobbs — a judgement is a legal document to be issued by the court that is separate from its opinion, which was released Friday.
In response, Whole Woman’s Health, an abortion provider that operates four clinics in Texas, announced it will stop providing abortions while it reviews the Supreme Court’s decision, the Texas Tribune reported.
Abortion clinics in other states are following suit, according to Axios.
In Alabama, state Attorney General Steve Marshall announced that pro-life laws “that have not been enjoined by a court are in full effect,” and that his office will sue to dismiss court orders blocking a statewide abortion ban. He advised any abortionist or abortion clinics operating in the state of Alabama in violation of the law to “immediately cease and desist operations.” Abortion services at the West Alabama Women’s Center in Tuscaloosa ceased after the attorney general’s directive, the Montgomery Advertiser reported.
Planned Parenthood Great Plains announced Friday that abortion services at its clinic in Little Rock, Arkansas, have been paused, while abortions at its Oklahoma clinics had been canceled last month after the state enacted a total ban on abortions.
“State by state, we have seen access to abortion virtually eliminated. Oklahoma recently enacted the first total abortion ban most Americans have seen in their lifetime. Even while reproductive rights were being taken away before our very eyes, many people still doubted Roe could ever fall. Today this creeping march to crush fundamental freedoms has reached its awful conclusion: your body is not your own,” said Emily Wales, president and CEO of Planned Parenthood Great Plains.
Elsewhere, Louisiana Democratic state Rep. Mandie Landry tweeted that all three of her state’s abortion clinics are now closed.
South Dakota Gov. Kristi Noem (R) said last week that the Plains state’s sole abortion clinic in Sioux Falls shuttered its doors as she issued a call for pro-life lawmakers to “redouble our focus on taking care of mothers in crisis.” Noem’s administration launched a new website Friday that directs expecting mothers to crisis pregnancy resources, financial assistance, and adoption services for unwanted children.
Lastly for now, Planned Parenthood in Wisconsin has halted all scheduled abortions at its clinics in Madison and Milawaukee following the Supreme Court’s ruling, per the Associated Press.
The end of abortion services in several states marks a significant victory for the pro-life movement, which now proceeds to fight for laws that support women through the entirety of their pregnancy and help mothers raise their children.