Thomas More Society attorney Martin Cannon was on hand Friday, May 5, 2017 with other members of the Iowa Coalition for Life when Governor Terry Branstad signed a ban on late-term abortions into law. Also known as the fetal pain bill, the law was passed in April by both the Iowa House and Senate. It bans abortions once a baby reaches 20 weeks in utero and establishes a three-day waiting period for women who seek an abortion.
Cannon and his colleagues at the Thomas More Society have been invested in the bill since its introduction, advising legislators, testifying at committees, formulating public commentary and assisting in drafting the bill. “This is very much central to our mission,” Cannon explained. “Science supports the facts. Babies in utero are alive and feel pain. Ignoring those facts would be a disgrace. It is heartening to see Governor Branstad and the Iowa Legislature protect women and their children from the atrocity of late term abortion – and restore an understanding of innate human dignity to the laws of the state.”
Tom Brejcha, President and Chief Counsel of the Thomas More Society, added, “Our attorneys will be on hand to help Iowa in defending this bill that they have responsibly put into effect.” He noted that abortion provider Planned Parenthood along with The American Civil Liberties Union, is already challenging the waiting-period portion of the law in the Iowa Supreme Court, after being denied an injunction in a lower court.
Iowa joins the 24 states that currently impose prohibitions on abortions after a certain number of weeks. Seventeen of these states, like Iowa, ban abortion at around 20 weeks.