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Alabama’s Near-Total Ban On Abortion Could Be Headed To Court As ACLU Gears Up For Fight


Almost immediately after news broke that the Alabama Senate had voted to approve a measure outlawing almost all abortions in the state, the American Civil Liberties Union announced its intention to sue over the legislation.
“We will not stand by while politicians endanger the lives of women and doctors for political gain,” Alexa Kolbi-Molinas, a senior staff attorney at the ACLU’s Reproductive Freedom Project, told CBS News in a statement.
“Know this, Governor [Kay] Ivey: If you sign this dangerous bill into law, we will see you in Court,” the attorney added, referring to Alabama’s Republican governor to whose desk the legislation is now headed.
Though Ivey has not revealed publicly whether or not she will sign the bill, she’s widely expected to.
BREAKING: Alabama’s legislature just passed a law that criminalizes doctors and makes abortion illegal.Abortion is NOT a crime — it’s a constitutional right.We will sue to stop this law from ever taking effect.— ACLU (@ACLU) May 15, 2019

If signed into law, the Human Life Protection Act would make it a felony for doctors to perform an abortion at any stage of pregnancy except in cases where the pregnant woman’s life is at serious risk; exemptions are not included in the bill for cases of incest or rape.
Alabama Lt. Gov. Will Ainsworth (R) made clear last week that the legislation is a direct effort to get Roe v. Wade overturned. 
“It is important that we pass this statewide abortion ban legislation and begin a long overdue effort to directly challenge Roe v. Wade,” Ainsworth said. 
After the Alabama Senate approved the bill 25 to 6 on Tuesday night, a slew of activists and prominent Democrats, including 2020 presidential hopefuls, voiced their outrage.
“This is a war on women, and it is time to fight like hell,” Sen. Kirsten Gillibrand (D-N.Y.) declared. 
This ban is dangerous and exceptionally cruel—and the bill’s authors want to use it to overturn Roe v. Wade. I’ve lived in that America and let me tell you: We are not going back—not now, not ever. We will fight this. And we will win. https://t.co/WNlr7Ys73q— Elizabeth Warren (@ewarren) May 15, 2019

Women’s rights are under attack. This relentless and cruel Republican assault on women’s health is designed to force a court battle to destroy Roe v. Wade. Democrats will be ready to defend health care and women’s reproductive freedom.— Nancy Pelosi (@TeamPelosi) May 15, 2019

Alabama just passed a near-total ban on abortion.No exceptions for rape or incest.Doctors could face 99 years in prison for providing abortions.This is a war on women, and it is time to fight like hell. https://t.co/lhwlbyeQsl— Kirsten Gillibrand (@SenGillibrand) May 15, 2019

Outrageous news coming out of Alabama. This law would effectively ban abortions in the state and criminalize doctors for doing their jobs – providing health care to women. https://t.co/90utkxn7J2— Kamala Harris (@KamalaHarris) May 15, 2019

The Alabama Senate just stripped women of health care rights by voting to make abortion procedures a felony. I will fight in solidarity with women to make sure rights guaranteed by Roe v. Wade will not be threatened by those who have no business making laws about their bodies. https://t.co/hS1a2lNEc0— Cory Booker (@CoryBooker) May 15, 2019

What Alabama is doing is blatantly unconstitutional and disrespects the fundamental right a woman has to make decisions about her own body.I say to Gov. Ivey: Veto this cruel bill. Stop the attack on women’s rights. https://t.co/yByOIyJ6XL— Bernie Sanders (@BernieSanders) May 15, 2019

As Al.com noted, it wouldn’t be the first time in recent memory that the ACLU has battled Alabama in court over the issue of abortion. 
In 2016, the state paid $1.7 million to the organization after a law requiring abortion providers to have hospital admitting privileges was struck down by federal courts.
The last time Alabama threatened abortion rights, they lost and paid @ACLUAlabama and @PPFA $1.7 million. We really don’t want Alabama’s money. Just keep abortion legal and we’re good. pic.twitter.com/BtGwDsfAPs— ACLU (@ACLU) May 11, 2019

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