Gov. Herbert signs bill banning abortion after 18 weeks

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utah state capitol
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SALT LAKE CITY (ABC4 News) – Utah Governor Gary Herbert signed a bill Monday banning abortions after 18 weeks. 

The bill, sponsored by Representative Cheryl Action (R- West Jordan), prohibits an abortion from being performed after the unborn child reaches 18 weeks in gestation.

Opponents of the bill including Planned Parenthood Action Council of Utah and American Civil Liberties Union of Utah have already said they plan to challenge the law in court.

“Politicians have no place in the private, medical decisions of Utah women,” said Planned Parenthood shared in a tweet.

The ACLU of Utah sent Herbert a formal request to veto the bill last week arguing that the law will be found unconstitutional. An excerpt from the letter reads: 

“Courts have struck down as unconstitutional state laws banning abortion beginning at 20 weeks in Arizona and Idaho as well as a law banning abortion at 15 weeks in Mississippi, 12 weeks in Arkansas and 6 weeks in North Dakota.

Our own United States Court of Appeals for the Tenth Circuit struck down Utah’s 20-week ban in 1996, which prompted the Utah legislature to revise the statue and replace a numerical limit with viability instead.” 

Herbert signed another bill Friday that prohibits abortions solely on the basis of a Down syndrome diagnosis. That bill will only go into effect if a similar measure in another state is upheld in court. 

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