The Quickie: South Carolina Abortion Providers Challenge New Six-Week Abortion Ban
For Immediate Release: May 26, 2023
Welcome to “The Quickie” — Planned Parenthood Action Fund’s daily tipsheet on the top health care & reproductive rights stories of the day. You can read “The Quickie'' online here.
In today’s Quickie: Abortion providers challenge South Carolina’s six-week ban, Gov. Ron DeSantis’s presidential campaign gets off to a rocky start, Sen. Tim Scott endorses South Carolina’s abortion ban, and PPGC’s Dr. Bhavik Kumar receives an award for his reproductive health advocacy.
SOUTH CAROLINA ABORTION PROVIDERS CHALLENGE NEW SIX-WEEK ABORTION BAN: Moments after Gov. Henry McMaster signed a six-week abortion ban, South Carolina abortion providers filed a lawsuit in state court seeking to block the ban immediately. The challenge argues that the new ban, S. 474, violates South Carolinians’ constitutional rights to privacy, equal protection, and substantive due process by banning abortion, providing inadequate protections for patients’ health, conditioning sexual assault survivors’ access to abortion on the disclosure of their personal information to law enforcement, violating the Medicaid Act, and improperly targeting Planned Parenthood through an unconstitutional bill of attainder.
Jenny Black, President and CEO, Planned Parenthood South Atlantic said of the ban:
“State lawmakers have once again trampled on our right to make private health care decisions, ignoring warnings from health care providers and precedent set by the state’s highest court just a few months ago. The decision of if, when, and how to have a child is deeply personal, and politicians making that decision for anyone else is government overreach of the highest order. We will always fight for our patients’ ability to make their own decisions about their bodies and access the health care they need. We urge the court to take swift action to block this dangerous ban on abortion.”
Check out the PP release.
DESANTIS DISASTER: Yesterday, Governor Ron DeSantis had a… “chaotic” start to his 2024 presidential campaign. Twitter is calling it a DeSaster. But his DeBacle isn’t nearly as bad as his record governing the state of Florida. DeSantis signed a six-week abortion ban in the middle of the night and has passed laws that harm LGBTQ+ people, young people, and more. Jenny Lawson, the executive director of Planned Parenthood Votes, responded to his announcement:
“Ron DeSantis’ governorship has been an unmitigated disaster for Floridians, and his candidacy is a grave threat to every American’s reproductive freedom. He’s shown time and time again that he will put himself and his political ambitions over anything and everyone — including the health and lives of Floridians. While Floridians demand affordable health care and safer communities, DeSantis has pushed policies that endanger Florida’s future. Voters in Florida don’t support his anti-abortion, anti-LGBTQ+ agenda, and DeSantis will soon learn that the rest of the country doesn’t, either. Everyone will see him for the dangerous, out-of-touch, overzealous politician he is. Planned Parenthood Votes will make sure of it.”
SCOTT ENDORSES SIX WEEK BAN: Tim Scott, who has become notorious for dodging specific questions about abortion on the campaign trail, is finally on the record about a six-week abortion ban. And to no one’s surprise, the South Carolina senator endorsed his state’s six-week abortion ban. He told South Carolina ETV host Gavin Jackson “I think the state is trying to protect the culture of life and that’s good news.”
Jenny Lawson, the executive director of Planned Parenthood Votes, called him out:
“Tim Scott is finally being honest and specific about his anti-abortion agenda. He thought he could keep being vague about his intentions to ban abortion nationwide and willingness to do so before most people even know they’re pregnant. Let this be a sign to every candidate running for president: You cannot hide your extreme anti-abortion agenda behind evasive language and answers for long. Voters will find out. And when they do, they won’t be happy.”
PLANNED PARENTHOOD GULF COAST PHYSICIAN AWARDED FOR “OUTSPOKEN, INTERSECTIONAL ADVOCACY”: Earlier this week, Physicians for Reproductive Health (PRH) held its annual “Voices of Courage: Care is Not a Crime” benefit in celebration of abortion providers across the country. Dr. Bhavik Kumar, medical director of primary and trans care at Planned Parenthood Gulf Coast, received the 2023 Tiller Advocacy Award which recognizes physicians who have taken significant action early in their careers to protect and expand abortion access in the face of political or legal threats.
Dr. Kumar received this award in recognition of his outspoken, intersectional advocacy for reproductive health and rights and his commitment to centering the communities most impacted by oppressive laws and policies in Texas.
In his acceptance speech, Dr. Kumar reflected: “It feels difficult to be courageous, but it feels so easy to do right by people, especially when the states I work in turn their backs on the people that I see every day. This is where I see real courage. This is why I chose to live and fight in Texas – the people who need us. The people who have thoughts, feelings, and dreams of a different life, a better life."
Learn more about Dr. Kumar’s advocacy and story here.