AZ, ID Fetal Pain Laws Struck Down; Supreme Court Showdown Predicted

Pro-life legislatures continue to pass strong pro-life legislation, including bills to ban abortions after 20 weeks gestation since scientific evidence shows that the unborn infants can feel pain at least by that state of their development. But liberal judges are now overturning those legislative accomplishments, paving the way for a show-down at the U.S. Supreme Court where the high court would ultimately consider whether medical evidence that unborn babies are capable of feeling pain supports a compelling state interest allowing such children protection from abortion — an argument that would further water down Roe v. Wade.

Arizona is one of ten states to pass an abortion ban at 20 weeks, often referred to as fetal pain legislation. Many of those bans have not yet been challenged and other states also are considering similar legislation. However, in May, the Ninth Circuit Court struck down the Arizona law. Since the Ninth Circuit Court has jurisdiction over Arizona and eight other Western states, in striking down the Grand Canyon state’s law, the notoriously liberal circuit court also invalidated Idaho’s similar law, which was passed in 2011. (A U.S. district court had earlier ruled that law to be unconstitutional, marking the first time that a court has so ruled on such a measure.)