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Senator Murray Statement on Idaho’s Extreme Abortion Ban Taking Effect Today

Late Wednesday, a federal judge blocked enforcement of Idaho’s extreme abortion ban in medical emergencies as rest of law takes effect today


(Washington, D.C.) – Today, U.S. Senator Patty Murray (D-WA), Chair of the Senate Committee on Health, Education, Labor, and Pensions (HELP), released the following statement on Idaho’s extreme abortion ban, which takes effect today. Idaho’s total ban on abortions does not include exceptions when the health of the mother is at risk—and last night, a federal judge blocked enforcement of the law in medical emergencies after the Biden administration filed suit in the first post-Roe challenge to state abortion restrictions.


“Today, women in Idaho join the one in three women across the country who are being denied access to abortion in their own state by Republican politicians who think they know what’s best for them.


“Idaho’s cruel abortion ban denies women their most fundamental right to control their own bodies and chart their own futures. And while I’m relieved a federal court has blocked enforcement of the ban in medical emergencies, every single woman should have the right to make her own health care decisions.


“In state after state, Republicans are forcing women to carry pregnancies to term, or drain their savings to travel and get care. They’re putting women’s health at risk and even threatening doctors with time in prison for protecting patients’ health. And with each new abortion ban taking effect, we’re seeing the health care crisis Republicans have caused worsen. I’ve talked to providers in eastern Washington who saw an influx of patients from across the border in Idaho once Roe fell—and that’s sure to rise as more women are forced to delay care and travel to get the services they need.


“It’s truly shameful. We can’t—and I won’t—stop fighting to restore every American’s reproductive rights.”


Idaho’s extreme abortion ban threatens providers with up to five years in prison for providing abortions in conflict with the state’s ban. Idaho’s separate, six-week abortion ban—which was modeled after Texas’ SB-8 law and allows family members to sue providers for a minimum of $20,000—went into effect last Friday. Tennessee’s near-total ban on abortion also takes effect today, as does Texas’ radical law putting providers who perform an abortion at risk of life in prison and a minimum $100,000 fine.