New York State law passes allowing abortions up until baby's due date


EEW Magazine News // Associated Press

With cheers and celebration, a new Reproductive Health Act was signed into law by Gov. Andrew Cuomo allowing late-term abortions—up until a baby’s due date if a woman’s health is at risk.

Even if the U.S. Supreme Court should overturn Roe v. Wade, the law will still stand.

The Democrat-led Senate and Assembly passed the bill on the 46th anniversary of the Roe decision, and pro-life advocates are heartbroken and outraged. The previous law only permitted abortions after 24 weeks of pregnancy if a woman’s life was at risk.

The new Reproductive Health Act states, "Every individual who becomes pregnant has the fundamental right to choose to carry the pregnancy to term, to give birth to a child, or to have an abortion."

This measure replaces a 1970 state abortion law that was passed three years before Roe legalized abortion nationwide.

"Those who actually read the bill can see that it's not simply codifying Roe v Wade," said Assemblywoman Nicole Malliotakis, who represents parts of Staten Island and Brooklyn. "In fact, it removes a requirement that a doctor be present, it removes all criminal negligence if a woman loses her baby as a result of assault, and it allows abortion into the third trimester, for really any reason."

New Orleans Saints tight end Ben Watson, who is an outspoken Christian, expressed strong disapproval for the law.

"It is a sad and evil day when the murder of our most innocent and vulnerable is celebrated with such overwhelming exuberance,” he said on social media. “We SHOULD be supporting and encouraging the building of families which are fundamental to any society. By not doing so, we invite consequences untold.”

Abortion rights supporters had pushed for years to update the law, but were blocked by the state Senate, long controlled by Republicans. But big election gains put Democrats in charge of the Senate this year, and the act easily cleared both chambers. Supporters said the election of Republican President Donald Trump — and his nomination of conservative justices — helped galvanize the effort.

Opponents lamented the enactment of the act, which some predicted would lead to an increase in late-term abortion.

Proponents of the law say it is not the government’s right to legislate what a woman does with her body, and her freedom of choice must be protected at all costs, even if that means extinguishing a full-term baby’s life.

RELATED: Study shows decline in U.S. abortions