Idaho legislators are moving quickly to pass an abortion ban designed to sidestep constitutional protections to abortion access
BOISE, ID — Today, the Idaho Senate passed SB 1309, one of the nation’s most extreme abortion restriction efforts since Texas’s “sue-thy neighbor” abortion ban, S.B. 8, went into effect in September. Idaho’s SB 1309 would eliminate nearly all abortion care in the state by banning abortion after approximately six weeks — before many people know they are pregnant — and undermining Idahoans’ constitutional right to abortion by allowing certain individuals, including some people with no relationship to the patient, to sue abortion providers.
Idaho’s anti-abortion lawmakers are advancing the proposed ban quickly, blatantly capitalizing on the Supreme Court’s failure to block S.B. 8 in Texas. Texas’s ban eliminated 60 percent of abortions within one month of going into effect. Idaho’s extremist lawmakers are hoping for the same result with S.B. 1309.
Enacting this abortion ban would not only violate Idahoans’ constitutional right to abortion care, but also would defy public opinion. Abortion bans remain unpopular in Idaho. Polling shows that the majority of Idaho voters believe it is important that women have access to all reproductive health care options, including abortion. Since the bill's introduction, opponents to SB 1309 wrote nearly 8,000 letters to their legislators, urging them to vote “no.”
“This bill is cruel, unpopular, and harmful,” said Jennifer M. Allen, CEO of Planned Parenthood Alliance Advocates. “Every Idahoan deserves the ability to make their own decisions about their health and their body. This bill would gut abortion access in Idaho, with dangerous consequences for people unable to receive the care they need. No one should compel people to cross state lines for essential time-sensitive health care or force them to remain pregnant against their will.”
“We are seeing the devastating consequences of the Supreme Court’s failure to block Texas S.B. 8, a blatantly unconstitutional abortion ban. Texas lawmakers have gotten away with denying their constituents’ access to abortion for six months, and now Idaho lawmakers want to follow suit. It’s a travesty,” said Alexis McGill Johnson, president of Planned Parenthood Action Fund. “These dangerous bans force people to either leave the state to get an abortion, or be forced to carry a pregnancy against their will. They compound the challenges marginalized communities already face in accessing care, including having to find childcare, transportation, time off from work or school, and other resources. Everyone should have the freedom and power to control their own bodies, decisions, and lives, and Planned Parenthood will continue to fight for that freedom in Idaho.”
Planned Parenthood Action Fund is an independent, nonpartisan, not-for-profit membership organization formed as the advocacy and political arm of Planned Parenthood Federation of America. The Action Fund engages in educational, advocacy, and limited electoral activity, including grassroots organizing, legislative advocacy, and voter education.
Planned Parenthood Alliance Advocates, Serving AK, HI, ID, IN, KY, WA (PPAA) is an independent, nonprofit, nonpartisan organization educating residents and policymakers about reproductive health issues in Alaska, Hawai‘i, Idaho, Indiana, Kentucky and Washington. PPAA lobbies and educates to advance Planned Parenthood's mission, and engages in limited electoral activities.