A Florida lawmaker on Wednesday introduced a bill inspired by the new Texas law banning abortions after a fetal heartbeat is detected, about six weeks before many people know they are pregnant.
Why is this important: Similar bills introduced in the Florida legislature have failed, but that was before the Supreme Court refused to block the Texas law, which is the most restrictive abortion law to be enforced since the ruling. Roe v. The Supreme Court’s Wade legalized abortion nationwide in 1973, according to AP.
The Florida bill, introduced by Republican State Rep. Webster Barnaby, allows private citizens to sue others who performed or “aiding or abetting” the proceedings.
- Florida’s bill would allow people to sue others six months after an illegal abortion, unlike the four provided by Texas law. In both cases, the state would financially support the plaintiff in the lawsuit.
- Florida Governor Ron DeSantis and several other Republican lawmakers said earlier this month they could support an abortion law like Texas’s.
The big picture: The Supreme Court has not ruled on the constitutionality of Texas abortion law and it has been challenged by several abortion rights organizations and other entities, including the Department of Health. Justice.
- The Supreme Court’s five conservative justices said this month in an unsigned opinion that maintaining the ban should not be taken as an indication of whether the court believes the law is unconstitutional.
- However, this has not stopped citizens from using the law to sue others. A San Antonio doctor is now facing trial after saying he performed an abortion that is considered illegal under new Texas law.
Go further: HHS issues new protections for Texas abortion providers and patients