Effort to Repeal Arizona's 1864 Abortion Ban Fails

One Republican voted with Democrats in state House
By Rob Quinn,  Newser Staff
Posted Apr 17, 2024 6:40 PM CDT
Arizona Lawmakers Block Move to Repeal 1864 Abortion Law
Members of the public cheer from the gallery during the legislative session, Wednesday, April 17, 2024, at the Capitol in Phoenix.   (AP Photo/Matt York)

Arizona lawmakers blocked another effort Wednesday to repeal a near-total ban on abortions dating from 1864 that the state's top court ruled was "enforceable" earlier this month. One Republican voted with Democrats in the GOP-controlled state House, but that wasn't enough to advance two motions to hold an immediate vote on repealing the ban, NBC News reports. House Speaker Ben Toma urged representatives to vote against the motions. "The last thing we should be doing today is rushing a bill through the legislative process to repeal a law that has been enacted and affirmed by the legislature several times," the Republican said.

When a repeal effort failed last week, Democrats in the chamber chanted "Shame, shame" at their GOP colleagues. "I would ask everyone in this chamber to respect the fact that some of us believe that abortion is the murder of children," Toma said Wednesday, per the Arizona Republic. "It is not OK to shout at each other, it is not OK to engage in the kind of behavior I saw on this floor last week." Democrats, who hope to flip control of the state House and Senate, plan to keep pushing for repeal, CNN reports. Abortion rights advocates also hope to get an initiative protecting access to abortion in November. Last week, Donald Trump said he thought the Arizona court's ruling went too far. (More abortion stories.)

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