Florida Supreme Court Upholds 15-Week Abortion Ban and Approves Pro-Abortion Amendment to Go on November Ballot

By Aliya Kuykendall Published on April 3, 2024

The Florida Supreme Court delivered two abortion-related decisions on Monday: one, a win for pro-life advocates. The other, a loss.

In the win, the Court upheld the state’s 15-week abortion ban. Florida’s 6-week abortion ban, which was written to take effect on May 1, is therefore allowed to take effect.

In the other decision, the Court approved a constitutional amendment to be put on the November ballot, saying it had no basis to disallow it. If 60% of Floridian voters approve the amendment, it will pass. The following would be part of Florida’s constitution: “no law shall prohibit, penalize, delay, or restrict abortion before viability or when necessary to protect the patient’s health, as determined by the patient’s healthcare provider.”

“Viability” is an unclear term that is generally considered to be between 22 and 24 weeks. “Patient’s health” is another unclear term which could hypothetically include anything that any kind of healthcare provider is willing to deem bad for the patient’s health in order to justify an abortion.

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Students for Life Action (SFLAction) President Kristan Hawkins called the decision by the Florida Supreme Court to allow the ballot initiative language to continue “an unfortunate mistake but one that the Pro-Life Generation will work to undo with voter education and outreach.” She added, “We disagree with the Supreme Court’s decision, but the fight goes on as a marathon, not a sprint.”

President Biden called the Court’s decision on the 15-week ban and the resulting protections against abortion “outrageous.”

Lila Rose, founder and president of Live Action, said about the 6-week ban that will go into effect 30 days from the decision, “Thousands of lives will be saved by this law.”

 

Aliya Kuykendall is a staff writer and proofreader for The Stream. You can follow Aliya on X @AliyaKuykendall and follow The Stream @Streamdotorg.

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