NATIONAL NEWS

Wisconsin Republicans set to pass bill banning abortions after 14 weeks of pregnancy

Jan 25, 2024, 7:23 AM

MADISON, Wis. (AP) — Republicans who control the Wisconsin state Assembly were poised Thursday to pass a bill that would call for a binding statewide referendum to ban abortion after 14 weeks of pregnancy.

Current Wisconsin law prohibits abortion after 20 weeks of pregnancy. The bill’s supporters say closing the window after 14 weeks could save more fetuses from death. The proposal would set up a statewide referendum during April’s election asking voters whether the 14-week prohibition should take effect. If approved, the bill would take effect the day after the results are certified.

The Assembly was scheduled to vote on the bill during a floor session set to begin Thursday morning. Approval would send the proposal to the Senate. It’s unclear whether it has enough support to pass that chamber; Republican Majority Leader Devin LeMahieu said earlier this month that it would be hard for his caucus to come together around an abortion bill that Democratic Gov. Tony Evers will just veto. Evers has all but pledged to veto the measure if it reaches his desk, saying repeatedly that he won’t sign any bill that restricts reproductive health care.

Regardless, even introducing the bill could earn Assembly Republicans points with the state’s conservative base. Democrats have parlayed anger over the U.S. Supreme Court’s decision in 2022 to overturn its landmark 1973 Roe vs. Wade ruling, which legalized abortion nationwide, into big election wins across the nation.

That dynamic was in full force last year in Wisconsin, where Janet Protasiewicz won a state Supreme Court seat after repeatedly announcing on the campaign trail that she supports abortion rights. Her victory handed liberal justices a 4-3 majority on the high court.

Making matters worse for Republicans, a Dane County judge ruled this past summer that Wisconsin’s 174-year-old ban on abortion prohibits feticide — an attempt to kill an unborn child — but not abortions. Planned Parenthood, which had ceased providing abortion services following the U.S. Supreme Court decision, resumed operations in September following the Dane County ruling.

The case is on appeal and likely will end up before the state Supreme Court. Republicans will have tough time persuading Protasiewicz and the rest of the liberal majority to reinstate the abortion ban in full.

National News

A general view during rehearsals at the 2024 Republican National Convention at the Fiserv Forum, Su...

Associated Press

The Latest: RNC set to begin in the aftermath of Trump assassination attempt

The Republican National Convention kicks off this week, with delegates and officials descending on Wisconsin amid the tumult that follows a Saturday assassination attempt on former President Donald Trump as he prepares to become the GOP’s official nominee. The quadrennial event takes place not only as Trump leads a party in lockstep behind him, but […]

29 minutes ago

Work continues on the roof of Gaido's restaurant in preparation for opening for diners for the firs...

Associated Press

In beachy Galveston, locals buckle down without power after Beryl’s blow during peak tourist season

GALVESTON, Texas (AP) — Vacuums sucked the water out of the seaside inn run by Nick Gaido’s family in Galveston since 1911 as power was still spotty nearly one week after a resurgent Hurricane Beryl swept into Texas. Blue tarp covered much of the torn off roof. Gaido scheduled cleanup shifts for the hotel and […]

7 hours ago

FILE - Balloons are hoisted to the ceiling in the Forum ahead of the 2024 Republican National Conve...

Associated Press

When does a presumptive nominee become a nominee? Here’s how Donald Trump will make it official

WASHINGTON (AP) — Monday 12:01 AM Nearly 2,500 delegates are gathering in Milwaukee this week for a roll call vote to select a the Republican presidential nominee, formally ending the presidential primary. It will be a moment lacking in suspense: Former President Donald Trump has already been the presumptive nominee for months, having clinched a […]

8 hours ago

Members of the Coalition to March on the RNC speak during a news conference ahead of the 2024 Repub...

Associated Press

GOP convention protests are on despite shooting at Trump rally

MILWAUKEE (AP) — Activists gathering in Milwaukee for the start of the Republican National Convention say the assassination attempt on former President Donald Trump won’t affect their long-standing plans to demonstrate outside the convention site this week. A diverse range of organizations and activists is expected outside the downtown Fiserv Forum. The largest expected demonstration […]

8 hours ago

FILE - Actor Clint Eastwood speaks to an empty chair while addressing delegates during the Republic...

Associated Press

Floor fights, boos and a too-long kiss. How the dramatic and the bizarre define convention history

WASHINGTON (AP) — In 1948, the Republican and Democratic parties did something unthinkable in today’s climate of ferocious political animosity: They not only held their national conventions in the same city, but shared some of the props. Both gathered in Philadelphia, largely because its Municipal Auditorium had already been fitted with the wiring needed for […]

8 hours ago

FILE - Republican presidential candidate former President Donald Trump speaks at a campaign rally, ...

Associated Press

The RNC’s first day will still focus on the economy. Here’s what to know about Trump’s plans

WASHINGTON (AP) — Donald Trump goes into the Republican National Convention with bold promises about the U.S. economy, but he has sketched out notably few details about how his plans would actually work. The convention’s first day is still expected to focus on the economy even after Saturday’s shooting at a Trump rally in Pennsylvania […]

8 hours ago

Wisconsin Republicans set to pass bill banning abortions after 14 weeks of pregnancy