Wyoming’s abortion pill ban would go into effect in July pending legal action that could potentially delay it. The implementation date of the comprehensive legislation banning all abortions that Gordon enacted is not specified in the bill.
With a previous ban in court, abortion currently remains legal in the state until it is viable or when the fetus could survive outside the womb.
In a statement, Gordon expressed concern that the latter law, dubbed the Life is a Human Right Act, would result in a lawsuit that “will delay any determination on the constitutionality of Wyoming’s anti-abortion ban.”
He noted that plaintiffs in an ongoing court case had filed a challenge to the new law earlier in the day unless he vetoed it.
“I believe this issue needs to be decided as soon as possible in order to finally resolve the abortion issue in Wyoming, and the best way to do that is by popular vote,” Republican Gordon said in a statement.
In a statement, Wyoming ACLU advocacy chief Antonio Serrano criticized Gordon’s decision to sign the ban on abortion pills, which are already banned in a number of states that ban all types of abortions.
“A person’s health, not politics, should guide important medical decisions — including the decision to have an abortion,” Serrano said.
Of the 15 states that have restricted access to the pills, six require an in-person visit to the doctor. These laws could stand up to court challenge; States have long had authority over how doctors, pharmacists, and other providers practice medicine.
States also set the rules for telemedicine consultations used to prescribe medication. Generally, this means that healthcare providers in states with restrictions on abortion pills face penalties such as fines or license suspension if they attempt to ship pills through the mail.
Women have already traveled across state lines to places where access to abortion pills is easier. This trend is expected to increase.
Since the reversal of roe Last June, abortion restrictions were up to the states, and the landscape has been changing rapidly. Thirteen states now enforce abortion bans at any stage of pregnancy, and another, Georgia, bans it as soon as cardiac activity can be detected or around the sixth week of pregnancy.
Courts have shelved enforcement of abortion bans or severe restrictions in Arizona, Indiana, Montana, Ohio, South Carolina, Utah and Wyoming. Idaho courts have forced the state to allow abortions in medical emergencies.