South Carolina Bans Abortion After 20 Weeks — Even In Cases Of Rape

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Women in South Carolina will be banned from obtaining an abortion after 20 weeks into a pregnancy — even in cases where they are survivors or incest or rape — under legislation signed by Gov. Nikki Haley Wednesday. The law, which passed the state Legislature last week, includes exceptions for cases in which the life of the woman is in danger or a fetus cannot survive outside the womb, according to The Associated Press. Ilyse Hogue, president of NARAL Pro-Choice America, has previously called the legislation an "attempt to curb access to care for women in the most desperate of circumstances" in a letter urging Haley to veto the bill. A report released by NARAL found that 93% of counties in the state have no abortion clinics.

"While you and I may not agree on the question of legal abortion, we should at least agree that no woman should be denied options when faced with a tragic pregnancy outcome," Hogue wrote in the letter. "Instead of focusing on divisive restrictions, we can and should seek a common ground." Similar restrictions are on the books in 13 states, the AP reports, with several other bans on hold due to court challenges. Haley's decision to sign the ban into law comes days after Oklahoma Gov. Mary Fallin vetoed another high-profile abortion bill. That legislation would have made it a felony for a doctor to perform the procedure. This is a developing story. Check back for updates.

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