CV NEWS FEED // The Iowa Supreme Court deadlocked by a vote of 3-3 Friday, again preventing the state’s law protecting unborn children from abortion after six weeks of gestation from taking effect.
The Associated Press reported that
the state’s high court declined Friday to reinstate a law that would have largely banned the procedure, rebuffing Republican Gov. Kim Reynolds and, for now, keeping the conservative state from joining others with strict abortion limits.
The court’s move will leave abortion in the Hawkeye State legal until 20 weeks of gestation.
The six-week law, referred to by many as a “heartbeat bill,” was signed into law by Gov. Kim Reynolds, R-IA, in 2018. Reynolds this year attempted to appeal a lower court decision from 2019, which had also blocked the pro-life law.
Friday’s deadlock resulted in the law being blocked because the court abides by a precedent dictating that in the rare times the court is “equally divided,” a “decision of district court is affirmed.” As a result, in this case, the 2019 lower court decision was upheld.
The Iowa State Supreme Court has seven justices, of whom six were appointed by Reynolds and the other by her Republican predecessor Terry Branstad. Justice Dana Oxley recused herself to prevent a conflict of interest, as the law firm where she worked represented an abortion facility.
Abortion industry giant Planned Parenthood immediately celebrated the deadlock, calling it a “major win.”
In a statement, Reynolds blasted the non-decision as a “lack of action.”
“To say that today’s lack of action by the lowa Supreme Court is a disappointment is an understatement,” Reynolds said. “Not only does it disregard lowa voters who elected representatives willing to stand up for the rights of unborn children, but it has sided with a single judge in a single county who struck down lowa’s legislation based on principles that now have been flat-out rejected by the U.S. Supreme Court.”
The governor stated that she is “reviewing her options,” such as shepherding another pro-life law through the state’s Republican-dominating legislature. She added:
The fight is not over. There is no right more sacred than life, and nothing more worthy of our strongest defense than the innocent unborn. We are reviewing our options in preparation for continuing the fight.
Planned Parenthood vowed to oppose the governor as well as other pro-life efforts nationwide, saying, “Today we will celebrate, and tomorrow we will gear ourselves up for the next fight.”