By Shania Shelton
The Michigan state Senate voted Wednesday to repeal the state’s 1931 abortion ban, as well as its sentencing guidelines.
The bills passed 20-18 along party lines in the Democratic-controlled Senate after passing the House last week and were sent to Democratic Gov. Gretchen Whitmer for her signature. Democrats control the governor’s office and the state legislature for the first time in four decades.
Whitmer has been a vocal supporter of abortion rights, using the issue as a driving force in his 2022 re-election campaign. Governor filed a lawsuit against several county prosecutors in his state last year in an attempt to prevent the 1931 ban from taking effect after the US Supreme Court struck down Roe v. Wade.
Michigan law, which was struck down by a 1973 high court decision but remained on the state’s books, prohibits abortions even in cases of rape or incest, except to preserve the life of the woman.
Winnie Brinks, Majority Leader in the Michigan State Senate previously told CNN one of the first priorities of the new legislature would be to repeal the prohibition that was reintroduced after the Supreme Court ruling last summer.
In September, a state court declared the abortion ban unconstitutional and blocked its enforcement, allowing abortion to remain legal in the state.
michigan voters right to abortion enshrined into the state constitution during the midterm elections, a move that was intended to help block the ban from taking effect.
But reproductive rights advocates see the passage of the bills in the legislature as a “big step forward.”
“This is proof positive that elections matter,” Mini Timmaraju, president of NARAL Pro-Choice America, said in a statement. “Michigans made it clear in the midterms that they overwhelmingly support reproductive freedom, and repealing this oppressive pre-Roe ban sends an unequivocal signal that Michigan will always fight for abortion access.”
Democratic state senators celebrated the passage of the bills in the legislature on Wednesday.
“My abortion was necessary to save my life,” declares Senator Rosemary Bayer said on Twitter. “I’m glad to be here today for that, and to be able to vote on this bill and ensure that this lifesaving health care is protected and remains safe and legal here in Michigan.”
However, Republicans in the Michigan State Senate oppose the new effort, calling it “dangerous.”
“While Senate Republicans have introduced legislation to strengthen guarantees for women, Senate Democrats are rushing dangerous bills to repeal longstanding protections for women and the unborn,” said the Republican state senator. Joseph Bellino. in a sentence.
The CNN Wire
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