Last year, North Dakota approved a bill banning abortion as soon as the child’s heartbeats are perceptible. This may occur during the sixth week of pregnancy.
Federal judge Daniel Hovland declared this bill to be "invalid and unconstitutional" in the light of Supreme Court jurisprudence regarding Roe v. Wade in 1973. During his judgement, he added that "the controversy surrounding women’s rights to opt for an abortion would never end. Without doubt, this is one of the most controversial topics to be debated in society”. The Attorney General of the State of North Dakota announced that he would investigate the possibility of submitting an appeal to the Supreme Court. The Court recently refused to consider by way of appeal a judgement that renounced a bill, passed in the State of Arizona, banning abortion after 20 weeks of pregnancy.
Similarly, a bill passed by the State of Arkansas, banning abortion after 12 weeks for the same reason relating to the child’s heartbeat, was revoked by a federal judge. The State of Alabama is also currently in the throes of discussing a law banning abortion as soon as the child’s heartbeats are perceptible. (Gènéthique press review on February 17th, 2014).