In an illustration photo, a doctor performs an ultrasound on a pregnant woman during her visit to a gynecologist. (Jennifer Jacobs/AFP/Getty Images)
BY ZACHARY STIEBER May 17, 2019 Updated: May 17, 2019
The House approved the bill, HB 126, by a vote of 110-44 after the Senate approved it by a vote of 24-10. It’s also known as the “Right to Life of the Unborn Child Act.”
The legislation states, “It is the intent of the general assembly of the state of Missouri to defend the right to life of all humans, born and unborn, and declares that Missouri … [is] a ‘sanctuary of life’ that protects pregnant women and their unborn children.”
If a heartbeat is detected for the unborn child, the bill would make it illegal to get an abortion unless the mother’s life is in danger. If a heartbeat is not detected, abortions are legal if completed within 96 hours of the detection test.
The bill also outlined that if federal law is changed then “abortion shall not be permitted in the state under any circumstances.”
“If a total ban is not possible, abortions shall be limited to women who are less than eight weeks gestational age, with a required fetal heartbeat or brain function test.”
If a court rules against the law, then it would revert to banning abortions for women after 14 weeks of gestation. If that is also challenged successfully, then the law would not permit abortions past 18 weeks gestational age.
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