NATIONAL NEWS

Democrats’ bill would make Roe v. Wade law and expand it

May 11, 2022, 5:26 AM | Updated: Jun 13, 2022, 11:01 am
People ride bicycles pass the U.S. Supreme Court Building on May 09, 2022 in Washington, DC. Later ...
People ride bicycles pass the U.S. Supreme Court Building on May 09, 2022 in Washington, DC. Later today Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer (D-NY) will hold a procedural vote on making abortion legal throughout the United States and later this week it will be taken up by the entire U.S. Senate. However, the vote requires a sixty-vote threshold to pass, meaning it will likely fail. (Photo by Anna Moneymaker/Getty Images)
(Photo by Anna Moneymaker/Getty Images)

WASHINGTON (AP) — Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer says Democrats’ abortion legislation is “very simple,” as it would enshrine into federal law the landmark 1973 Roe v. Wade decision that legalized abortion nationwide.

Senate Democrats are moving quickly to try to codify the 50-year-old ruling after a draft U.S. Supreme Court opinion suggesting the court is poised to overturn the case was leaked last week. But they don’t have enough votes, and Republicans are expected to block the bill in a test vote Wednesday.

But if the Democratic legislation were to become law, it would do more than just preserve the status quo.

The bill would also expand protections, invalidating many state laws that Democrats and abortion rights advocates say have infringed on the original 1973 ruling. Two Republican senators who support abortion rights have indicated they won’t vote for it, instead favoring their own, narrower legislation.

A look at the legislation the Senate is voting on Wednesday:

CODIFYING ROE V. WADE

Broadly, the main objective of the legislation is to codify Roe v. Wade into federal law, meaning it would be much harder for the Supreme Court to overturn. In the five decades the ruling has been court precedent, abortion rights supporters have not been able to pass federal legislation to legalize abortion. And because the Supreme Court decided on that right, it can also take it away — however rare that move may be.

In codifying Roe, the legislation would establish that health care providers have rights to provide abortion services and that patients have a right to receive abortions.

BANNING CERTAIN RESTRICTIONS

The Democrats’ bill would also end certain state laws that they say have chipped away at the original Roe v. Wade decision, banning what they say are medically unnecessary restrictions that block access to safe and accessible abortions. The court has allowed states to regulate but not ban abortion before the point of viability, around 24 weeks, resulting in a variety of state laws and restrictions that abortion-rights supporters oppose.

The bill would end bans earlier than 24 weeks, in addition to any restrictions that do not make exceptions for the patient’s health or life. It would also stop states from requiring providers share “medically inaccurate” information, or from requiring additional tests or waiting periods, aimed at dissuading a patient from having an abortion.

REPUBLICAN ALTERNATIVE

Republican Sens. Susan Collins of Maine and Lisa Murkowski of Alaska support abortion rights but have opposed the Democratic legislation, saying it is too expansive and could threaten some religious liberties that states have sought to protect.

They have introduced legislation that would hew closer to what the court currently allows, more generally prohibiting states from imposing an “undue burden” on the ability of a woman to choose whether to have an abortion prior to fetal viability. It is not expected to get a vote.

NEXT STEPS

Without the votes to pass their bill, Democrats have few options to block the eventual court ruling, if it overturns Roe v. Wade.

Democratic leaders have signaled that they instead intend to take the fight to voters ahead of this year’s midterms.

“We’ve got to win elections,” Sen. Chris Murphy, D-Conn., said Tuesday.

___

Associated Press writers Lisa Mascaro and Farnoush Amiri contributed to this report.

KSL 5 TV Live

Top Stories

National News

[FILE] Jail Handcuffs (KSL-TV)...
Michael Houck

Utah man pleads guilty to child pornography charges in Virginia

A Cedar City man has pleaded guilty to child pornography charges after sending explicit videos to an undercover FBI agent in Virginia.
24 hours ago
Kevin Johnson is shown at the Clayton Courthouse Tuesday, April 3, 2007, in Clayton, Mo....
Dakin Andone, CNN

Man who murdered police officer in 2005 has been executed in Missouri

Kevin Johnson -- a death row inmate who was convicted in the 2005 murder of a Kirkwood, Missouri, police officer but claimed racial bias in his prosecution -- was executed Tuesday night by lethal injection.
24 hours ago
A tree is down on top of a trailer home....
Amir Vera, Jason Hanna, Melissa Alonso and Aya Elamroussi, CNN

At least 2 killed in Alabama as severe storms and tornadoes sweep across the South

Severe storms and tornadoes swept through parts of the South from Tuesday into Wednesday morning, killing at least two people in Alabama and damaging homes, other buildings and downing trees in several states, officials said.
24 hours ago
A police officer making an announcement behind a podium for the San Francisco Police Department...
JANIE HAR Associated Press

San Francisco will allow police to deploy robots that kill

The Democratic San Francisco Board of Supervisors voted to allow police to use potentially lethal, remote-controlled robots in emergency situations. The vote Tuesday was 8 to 3. Civil rights advocates opposed the proposal, saying it would lead to further militarization of police. The San Francisco Police Department said it would like the option to deploy robots equipped with explosive charges to disable suspects when lives are at stake. The San Francisco Board of Supervisors is divided on support for law enforcement. A new state law requires police and sheriffs departments to inventory its military grade equipment and seek approval for their use.
24 hours ago
NASHVILLE, TN - JUNE 07:  Danny Masterson speaks during a Launch Event for Netflix "The Ranch: Part...
BRIAN MELLEY and ANDREW DALTON, Associated Press

Mistrial declared in actor Danny Masterson’s rape trial

A judge has declared a mistrial at the rape trial of “That ’70s Show” actor Danny Masterson.
24 hours ago
Rep. Hakeem Jeffries (D-NY) (C) holds a news conference after he was elected leader of the 118th Co...
LISA MASCARO AP Congressional Correspondent

Jeffries wins historic bid to lead House Dems after Pelosi

House Democrats ushered in a new generation of leaders on Wednesday with Rep. Hakeem Jeffries elected to be the first Black American to head a major political party in Congress at a pivotal time as long-serving Speaker Nancy Pelosi and her team step aside next year.
24 hours ago

Sponsored Articles

house with for rent sign posted...
Chase Harrington, president and COO of Entrata

Top 5 reasons you may want to consider apartment life over owning a home

There are many benefits of renting that can be overshadowed by the allure of buying a home. Here are five reasons why renting might be right for you.
Festive kitchen in Christmas decorations. Christmas dining room....
Lighting Design

6 Holiday Decor Trends to Try in 2022

We've rounded out the top 6 holiday decor trends for 2022 so you can be ahead of the game before you start shopping. 
Happy diverse college or university students are having fun on their graduation day...
BYU MBA at the Marriott School of Business

How to choose what MBA program is right for you: Take this quiz before you apply!

Wondering what MBA program is right for you? Take this quiz before you apply to see if it will help you meet your goals.
Diverse Group of Energetic Professionals Team Meeting in Modern Office: Brainstorming IT Programmer...
Les Olson

Don’t let a ransomware attack get you down | Protect your workplace today with cyber insurance

Business owners and operators should be on guard to protect their workplace. Cyber insurance can protect you from online attacks.
Hand turning a thermostat knob to increase savings by decreasing energy consumption. Composite imag...
Lighting Design

5 Lighting Tips to Save Energy and Money in Your Home

Advances in lighting technology make it easier to use smart features to cut costs. Read for tips to save energy by using different lighting strategies in your home.
Portrait of smiling practitioner with multi-ethnic senior people...
Summit Vista

How retirement communities help with healthy aging

There are many benefits that retirement communities contribute to healthy aging. Learn more about how it can enhance your life, or the life of your loved ones.
Democrats’ bill would make Roe v. Wade law and expand it