Iowa Gov. Branstad plans to sign fireworks bill

Judith QuinnMay 06, 2017

Not far away at the Iowa Judicial Building, paperwork was being filed by attorneys for Planned Parenthood and the American Civil Liberties Union asking the state Supreme Court to reverse a decision a day earlier by Polk County Judge Jeffrey Farrell rejecting their request to halt implementation of the law until the matter can be decided at trial. Governor Terry Branstad plans to sign the Republican-led legislature's 20-week abortion ban into law tomorrow.

Branstad announced Friday that he'd sign the bill Tuesday despite arguments from opponents that expanding fireworks sales would lead to more injuries and property damage.

Clapman argued the mandatory 72-hour waiting period would create an undue burden on patients by forcing multiple appointments, noting low-income rural patients would struggle the most with such guidelines. Gov. Branstad signed it into law at 8:30 a.m. Friday. The legislation also requires women to wait 72 hours prior to getting an abortion.

Seventeen of these states ban abortion at about 20 weeks.

Beside the waiting period, it would outlaw most abortions after 20 weeks of pregnancy and wouldn't allow exceptions for rape, incest or fatal fetal anomalies.

According to the lawsuit, Planned Parenthood of the Heartland provided over 2,100 medication abortions and over 1,200 surgical abortions in Iowa in the past year.

"The act thus imposes a medically unnecessary mandatory delay", they argued, adding that physicians who violate the mandatory delay and additional trip requirements are subject to discipline.

"The court will then consider whether the injunction should remain in force pending this court's resolution of appellants' application for interlocutory appeal", the one-page order states. The justices have given attorneys until noon on Monday to present legal briefs on the matter.

Iowa Secretary of State Paul Pate assures Iowans that voting participation will maintain its high standard nationally, and maybe build upon it under this new law.

"We welcome Iowa to the growing collection of states enacting necessary reforms to prevent against voter fraud and boost confidence in our elections", Public Interest Legal Foundation President and General Counsel J. Christian Adams said in an email statement on the law.

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