Noem signs bill aiming to restrict abortion pill access

Mar 23, 2022, 2:43 PM | Updated: 2:46 pm
South Dakota Gov. Kristi Noem, speaks at the Conservative Political Action Conference (CPAC) Friday...

South Dakota Gov. Kristi Noem, speaks at the Conservative Political Action Conference (CPAC) Friday, Feb. 25, 2022, in Orlando, Fla. (AP Photo/John Raoux)

(AP Photo/John Raoux)

SIOUX FALLS, S.D. (AP) — South Dakota Gov. Kristi Noem on Wednesday signed a bill that would make the state one of the most difficult places to get abortion pills, though most of the law will not be enacted unless the state prevails in a federal court battle.

The Republican governor pushed the legislation this year to enshrine a similar rule from her administration that attempted to require abortion-seekers to make three separate visits to a doctor to take abortion pills. But a federal court issued a preliminary injunction against that rule last month, and the bill Noem signed contains language that says the restrictions are not enforceable unless the state convinces a federal court to overturn that order.

U.S. District Judge Karen Schreier halted the state from implementing the rule after finding that it would have created “an undue burden on a person’s right to seek an abortion.” However, South Dakota has appealed that decision to the Eight Circuit Court of Appeals.

Noem cast the law as prohibiting telemedicine prescriptions for abortion pills. The Food and Drug Administration last year permanently removed a major obstacle for women seeking the medication by eliminating a long-standing requirement that they pick it up in person. About 40% of all abortions in the U.S. are now done through medication rather than surgery.

However, women in South Dakota are already required to make two trips to an abortion clinic to get the pills. First, for an initial screening, then they must wait 72 hours before they can return to the clinic to get both drugs in the two-dose regimen. They can take the second dose at home.

Noem’s law, if it were to take effect, adds a third mandatory visit that would require women to wait at least a day before returning to the abortion clinic to take the second drug in the regimen.

Planned Parenthood, which operates the state’s only clinic that regularly provides abortion services, has argued that the restriction would have made it practically impossible for the clinic to provide any medicine-induced abortions.

Noem said in a statement announcing the bill signing that she is hoping the U.S. Supreme Court will this year overturn Roe v. Wade, the 1973 landmark case that established the nationwide right to an abortion, but she is also not waiting for that to happen.

The law, which will take effect in July, contains a section that does not hinge on the federal courts: increasing to a felony the punishment for anyone who prescribes medication for an abortion without a license from the South Dakota Board of Medical and Osteopathic Examiners.

On Tuesday, Noem also signed a bill that received unanimous support from both Democrats and Republicans in the Legislature to make it a crime to threaten a woman to receive an abortion against her will or compel her to receive an abortion.

“South Dakota will continue to advance legislation that protects the lives of unborn children,” Noem said. “The two bills that I am signing today are crucial because they are also protections for mothers.”

The ACLU of South Dakota criticized the Republican-controlled Legislature earlier this month for passing the bill restricting access to abortion pills.

Jett Jonelis, the advocacy manager for the organization, reacted to the bill’s passage by saying in a statement that “South Dakotans deserve the right to make their own personal decisions about their lives and futures without politicians getting in the middle of the doctor-patient relationship.”

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

AP

Joe Garner, a truck driver and shop steward for the local 315 of the International Brotherhood of T...
Associated Press

Self-driving semis focus of California rules, legislation

SACRAMENTO, Calif. (AP) — As California regulators explore new rules to put self-driving semitrucks on the road, labor unions are rushing to the state Legislature to ask for a new law they say will protect their jobs — the start of a debate that could shape the future of the nation’s nearly $900 billion trucking […]
18 hours ago
FILE - Health and Human Services Secretary Xavier Becerra speaks during a news conference at the HH...
Associated Press

Feds expect to collect $4.7B in insurance fraud penalties

WASHINGTON (AP) — The Biden administration estimated Monday that it could collect as much as $4.7 billion from insurance companies with newer and tougher penalties for submitting improper charges on the taxpayers’ tab for Medicare Advantage care. Federal watchdogs have been sounding the alarm for years about questionable charges on the government’s private version of […]
18 hours ago
(AP Photo/Susan Walsh)...
Associated Press

President Biden to end COVID-19 emergencies on May 11

WASHINGTON (AP) — President Joe Biden informed Congress on Monday that he will end the twin national emergencies for addressing COVID-19 on May 11, as most of the world has returned closer to normalcy nearly three years after they were first declared. The move to end the national emergency and public health emergency declarations would […]
18 hours ago
Associated Press

‘Father of Peeps’ marshmallow candies Bob Born dies at 98

Ira “Bob” Born, a candy company executive known as the “Father of Peeps” for mechanizing the process to make marshmallow chicks, has died. He was 98. Just Born Quality Confections, the 100-year-old family-owned company Born led for much of his life, said Monday that he had died peacefully on Sunday. Born began his life in […]
18 hours ago
Associated Press

Russian millionaire on trial in hack, insider trade scheme

BOSTON (AP) — A wealthy Russian businessman and associates made tens of millions of dollars by cheating the stock market in an elaborate scheme that involved hacking into U.S. computer networks to steal insider information about companies such as Microsoft and Tesla, a prosecutor told jurors on Monday. Vladislav Klyushin, the owner a Moscow-based information […]
18 hours ago
FILE - The reflection of a 2021 Ford Mustang Mach E is seen in the window as it charges at a Ford d...
Associated Press

Court upholds Minnesota ‘Clean Car Rule’ tied to California

ST. PAUL, Minn. (AP) — The Minnesota Court of Appeals on Monday upheld the state’s “Clean Car Rule,” which ties the state’s vehicle emission standards to California regulations, as judges accepted assurances that California’s planned phaseout of gasoline-powered cars won’t automatically apply in Minnesota. A three-judge panel rejected the arguments of Minnesota’s auto dealers, who […]
18 hours ago

Sponsored Articles

...
Day & Night Air Conditioning, Heating and Plumbing

Company looking for oldest air conditioner and wants to reward homeowner with new one

Does your air conditioner make weird noises or a burning smell when it starts? If so, you may be due for an AC unit replacement.
(Pexels Photo)...

Sports gambling can be fun for adults, but it’s a dangerous game for children

While adults may find that sports gambling is a way to enhance the experience with more than just fandom on the line, it can be a dangerous proposition if children get involved in the activity.
...
Quantum Fiber

How high-speed fiber internet edges out cable for everyday use

In a world where technology drives so much of our daily lives, a lack of high-speed internet can be a major issue.
Noem signs bill aiming to restrict abortion pill access