|[Published: Wednesday May 15 2019]
US state Alabama bans abortion
ALABAMA, United States 15 May (ANA) - Alabama has become the latest US state to move to restrict abortions by passing a bill to outlaw the procedure in almost all cases.
Supporters say they expect the law to be blocked in court but hope that the appeals process will bring it before the Supreme Court.
They want the court, which now has a conservative majority, to overturn the 1973 ruling legalising abortion.
Sixteen other states are seeking to impose new restrictions on abortion.
Earlier this year the Supreme Court blocked implementation of new abortion restrictions in Louisiana. However the ruling was made by a narrow margin and the case is due to be reviewed later this year.
The bill's architects expect that it will be defeated in the lower courts, but hope that it will therefore eventually come before the Supreme Court.
They have been emboldened by the addition of two Trump-nominated conservative justices, Neil Gorsuch and Brett Kavanaugh, who give the nine-member court a conservative majority.
Their aim, they say, is for the landmark 1973 Roe v Wade ruling to be undermined or overturned completely.
Alabama's Lieutenant Governor Will Ainsworth said: "Roe must be challenged, and I am proud that Alabama is leading the way."
Eric Johnston, who founded the Alabama Pro-Life Coalition that helped draft the bill, told NPR: "The dynamic has changed.
"The judges have changed, a lot of changes over that time, and so I think we're at the point where we need to take a bigger and a bolder step."
The state Senate approved the law by 25 votes to six, rejecting exemptions for cases of rape or incest.
Some observers noted that all those voting for the bill were men.(ANA)
FA/ANA/15 May 2019------