S. Carolina legislature’s final effort to tweak abortion law

Nov 7, 2022, 8:14 AM | Updated: 10:15 pm
FILE - Supporters of stricter abortion laws and opponents watch the South Carolina House special se...

FILE - Supporters of stricter abortion laws and opponents watch the South Carolina House special session on abortion on monitors in the Statehouse lobby on Sept. 27, 2022, in Columbia, S.C. South Carolina Supreme Court justices grilled lawyers over the extent of the right to privacy in a case Wednesday, Oct. 19, 2022, that could determine the scope of the state's abortion restrictions. (AP Photo/Jeffrey Collins, File)

(AP Photo/Jeffrey Collins, File)

COLUMBIA, S.C. (AP) — After a dozen meetings and sessions over the summer and fall, South Carolina lawmakers are almost out of time to do something to change the state’s abortion laws during a special session prompted by the overturning of Roe v. Wade.

A conference committee of state senators and House members will meet one last time Wednesday morning to try to sort out a compromise between the House, which wants a near total abortion ban, and the Senate, which wants to tweak the current law that amounts to a ban about six weeks after conception.

The full Senate is set to meet an hour after the committee to consider anything that passes with the House set to go into session Thursday if anything gets through the Senate.

By law, this year’s General Assembly session ends Sunday. With the election of 124 House members earlier in the week, everything resets and all bills must start from the beginning of the legislative process in January.

South Carolina’s current roughly six-week ban isn’t being enforced as the state Supreme Court is considering a challenge that it violates the right to privacy in the state constitution.

That leaves an older, 20-week abortion ban in place but no clinics in the state perform the procedure more than 14 weeks after conception.

Both sides left the last conference committee meeting Nov. 1 in doubt they can get any bill to the governor’s desk in 2022.

Republican Senate Majority Leader Shane Massey told the committee there aren’t enough votes in the Senate to pass an abortion ban earlier than the present law, which prevents the procedure after cardiac activity can be detected in a fetus except for pregnancies caused by rape or incest, or if the life of the mother is in danger.

House members had a chance to accept the Senate’s version when they met in October, but rejected it. The Senate’s bill isn’t a total ban, but supporters said it solves the possible right to privacy argument, cuts the time that victims of rape and incest who become pregnant can seek an abortion from 20 weeks to about 12 weeks and requires that DNA from the aborted fetus be collected for police.

Supporters of the stricter ban i n the House said voters made it clear they wanted action when the U.S. Supreme Court overturned Roe v. Wade this summer and left abortion laws up to the state. Republican senators who are against a total ban either want to take time to see the effects of stricter bans in other states or first want to expand adoption, social and education programs to take care of more babies.

Democrats have largely stayed quiet during the debate, letting the Republicans fight among themselves and pulling in more moderate senators. They said people who support women’s rights were going to lose no matter what happened because the state’s abortion rules are so restrictive.

Copyright © The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

AP

Associated Press

Mexico says tourists lost documents in fire on resort island

MEXICO CITY (AP) — Tourists and local people escaped unharmed from a large fire that raged in an area of hotels and guest houses on the island of Holbox, at the tip of Mexico’s Yucatan Peninsula, Mexican officials said Tuesday, Authorities said some tourists lost their documents to the blaze. It was not clear how […]
17 hours ago
Associated Press

Big tobacco tries to stop California flavored tobacco ban

SAN DIEGO (AP) — R.J. Reynolds and other tobacco companies filed a request Tuesday asking the U.S. Supreme Court to impose an emergency order to stop California from enforcing a ban on flavored tobacco products that was overwhelmingly approved by voters earlier this month. The ban was first passed by the state legislature two years […]
17 hours ago
Associated Press

Key allegations, witnesses as Trump Org. trial winds down

NEW YORK (AP) — Former President Donald Trump’s inaugural address clocked in at just 16 minutes. Closing arguments are slated for Thursday in his company’s criminal tax fraud case? Prosecutors and defense lawyers say those could take seven hours or more. Those projections speak to the complexity of the case, which stems from longtime Trump […]
17 hours ago
FILE - In this aerial file photo provided by the National Park Service is the Junction Butte wolf p...
Associated Press

Montana judge restores state wolf hunting regulations

HELENA, Mont. (AP) — A Montana judge on Tuesday lifted a temporary restraining order that limited wolf hunting and trapping, saying there is nothing to suggest rules now in place will make wolf populations unsustainable in the short term. District Judge Christopher Abbott also rejected concerns raised by environmentalists that harvesting up to six wolves […]
17 hours ago
FILE - Residents who are fed up with the army's strategy of simply separating the Jalisco and the M...
Associated Press

Mexico high court upholds keeping military on police duties

MEXICO CITY (AP) — Mexico’s Supreme Court upheld on Tuesday a constitutional change that allows the military to continue in law enforcement duties until 2028. The court ruled against appeals that argued law enforcement should be left to civilian police forces. Critics warned President Andrés Manuel López Obrador is militarizing the country, and ignoring the […]
17 hours ago
Associated Press

Texas woman pleads guilty to role in Vanessa Guillen’s death

AUSTIN, Texas (AP) — The only suspect arrested in connection with the killing of Vanessa Guillén at a Texas military base in 2020 pleaded guilty Tuesday to charges that included helping dispose of the soldier’s body near Fort Hood. Cecily Aguilar, 24, pleaded guilty in a federal court in Waco, Texas, to one count of […]
17 hours ago

Sponsored Articles

SHIBA WA...

Medicare open enrollment is here and SHIBA can help!

The SHIBA program – part of the Office of the Insurance Commissioner – is ready to help with your Medicare open enrollment decisions.
Lake Washington Windows...

Choosing Best Windows for Your Home

Lake Washington Windows and Doors is a local window dealer offering the exclusive Leak Armor installation.
Anacortes Christmas Tree...

Come one, come all! Food, Drink, and Coastal Christmas – Anacortes has it all!

Come celebrate Anacortes’ 11th annual Bier on the Pier! Bier on the Pier takes place on October 7th and 8th and features local ciders, food trucks and live music - not to mention the beautiful views of the Guemes Channel and backdrop of downtown Anacortes.
Swedish Cyberknife Treatment...

The revolutionary treatment of Swedish CyberKnife provides better quality of life for majority of patients

There are a wide variety of treatments options available for men with prostate cancer. One of the most technologically advanced treatment options in the Pacific Northwest is Stereotactic Body Radiation Therapy using the CyberKnife platform at Swedish Medical Center.
Work at Zum Services...

Seattle Public Schools announces three-year contract with Zum

Seattle Public Schools just announced a three-year contract with a brand-new company to the Pacific Northwest to assist with their student transportation: Zum.
Swedish Cyberknife 900x506...

June is Men’s Health Month: Here’s Why It’s Important To Speak About Your Health

According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, men in the United States, on average, die five years earlier than women.
S. Carolina legislature’s final effort to tweak abortion law