Abortion in Florida: What will happen if Roe is overturned?


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Florida’s 15-week abortion ban is set to go into effect on July 1.

TAMPA, Fla. — An alleged leaked draft opinion suggests that the U.S. Supreme Court plans to overturn the landmark 1973 Roe v. Wade case that legalized abortion nationwide.

Although the draft does not represent any final decision, news of the leaked document, first reported Monday night by Politico, puts the future of abortion rights in the U.S. on shaky ground.

A decision to overrule Roe v. Wade would certainly have huge ramifications across the country, but it wouldn’t affect all states in the same way.

Several states have what’s known as “trigger bans” in place, meaning an overturn of Roe v. Wade would effectively trigger an automatic abortion ban. These states include Arkansas, Idaho, Kentucky, Louisiana, Mississippi, Missouri, North Dakota, Oklahoma, South Dakota, Tennessee, Texas, Utah and Wyoming. 

Lawmakers in some states like Idaho are considering “heartbeat bills” like the one already in effect in Texas that effectively bans abortions after six weeks, which is before some women even know they’re pregnant. Other policymakers have approved laws to protect abortion rights in their states without relying on the Roe decision.

So, where does Florida stand in all of this?

Current Florida law allows abortions up to 24 weeks, but last month, Gov. Ron DeSantis signed a controversial bill banning abortions after 15 weeks, with few exceptions — not including rape, incest or trafficking. As it stands, that law is set to take place on July 1, though it is facing some legal challenges.

“We are here today to protect life,” DeSantis said during the bill signing in April. “We are here today to defend those who cannot defend themselves.”

A Supreme Court decision to overturn Roe would deem this new Florida law, as well as a similar Mississippi law, constitutional. This would allow it to stay in place and open the door to future restrictions.

Florida’s law could be deemed unconstitutional in the event that the Supreme Court decides to uphold Roe v. Wade. It’s expected to rule on the case before its term ends in late June or early July.

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