There is something slightly inexplicable going on in the great state of Arkansas right now. The Republican-controlled legislature in Arkansas has just passed back-to-back unconstitutional bans on abortion.
You can’t ban abortion. Roe v. Wade, right?
Arkansas’ Democratic governor Mike Beebe vetoed both of the bans. No so much because he’s pro-choice, he actually has a mixed record on the subject. No, he has vetoed the bills because, dude, they are blatantly unconstitutional.
Quote: “The adoption of blatantly unconstitutional laws can be very costly to the taxpayers of our state.”
Well, today after already overriding the governor’s veto of the first ban, the Arkansas senate voted to override his veto of the second even stricter abortion ban. If the house also votes to override the veto, the ACLU naturally has already promised that costly lawsuit that the governor was talking about in his veto messages… …It is all but a forgone conclusion that the state will lose that lawsuit.
Guess what, Rachel, the New York Times has an update:
The law was passed by the newly Republican-controlled legislature over the veto of Gov. Mike Beebe, a Democrat, who called it “blatantly unconstitutional.” On Tuesday the state Senate voted to override his veto by a vote of 20 to 14; on Wednesday the House enacted the bill into law by a vote of 55 to 33, with several Democrats joining the Republican majority. [...]
Adoption of the law, called the “Human Heartbeat Protection Act,” is the first statewide victory for a restless emerging faction within the anti-abortion movement that has lost patience with the incremental whittling away at abortion rights — the strategy of established groups like National Right to Life and the Catholic Church while they wait for a more sympathetic Supreme Court. [...]
Last weekend, a number of Democrats “got worked over” by constituents who support stringent anti-abortion measures, said Representative Greg Leding, 27, a Democrat and House minority leader.
Rita Sklar, director of the American Civil Liberties Union of Arkansas, said “ It shows an utter disregard for women and their ability to make important personal decisions about their own reproductive health.”
…Also, the legislature can go on record as having tried to illegally ban abortion, even though they all know that is not a thing they are allowed to do. Apparently nothing is a waste of money when it comes to making the same point ever more emphatically in anti-abortion Republican politics.