DOTHAN, Ala. (WDHN) — With the United States Supreme Court likely to overturn Roe v. Wade, surgical abortions could soon become a thing of the past in Alabama.
However, most abortions these days are not surgical, they’re a result of prescription pills. Which has raised the question, could they also be banned in Alabama?
On top of surgical abortions, the future of abortion pills is being discussed by many states, a form that accounts for more than half of all abortions.
Currently, seven states have moved to restrict access to abortion pills in recent months, and if the SCOTUS moves forward with overturning Roe V. Wade.
According to Steve Flowers, WDHN’s Political Analyst, Alabama will act fast passing laws against abortion in all forms.
The use of abortion pills has been on the rise since 2000 when the U.S. Food and Drug Administration approved Mifepristone, one of the main pills used in abortions, and could be banned by Alabama lawmakers.
Mifepristone can be taken up to week 10 of pregnancy or 70 days or less since the first day of a woman’s last menstrual period.
“That Alabama will probably have one of the strongest abortion laws in the country because our legislators are made up of very conservative Republicans,” Flowers said.
In fact, in 2019 Alabama State Lawmakers, passed the ‘Alabama Human Life Protection Act’ making it a class A felony for a doctor to perform an abortion. However, that law was blocked by a federal judge from going into effect.
The law would have banned the ‘use or prescription of any instrument, medicine, drug or any other substance or device, with the intent to terminate the pregnancy of a woman known to be pregnant with knowledge that the termination, by those means will with reasonable likelihood cause the death of an unborn child.”
If the Supreme Court makes the move, Alabama has already enacted bans that will go into effect almost immediately if overturned.
“It will be very controversial,” Flowers said. “It will be a lot of demonstration on both sides. It will be a very controversial issue. But again until you see what the ruling is from the Supreme Court, you don’t know what is going to happen. People are just speculating.”
Just last year, the FDA lifted a requirement that women pick up abortion pills in person, allowing women in states where abortion is banned to have consultations for the pills online, or over the phone and then shipped through the mail. With even international pharmacies offering the pills.
However, with a total of 19 states still requiring a doctor to be physically present when the pills are given many speculate many of those states including Alabama will ban the pill altogether.
“Until we see the opinion, we don’t know where they want you to go with that thing,” Flowers said. “It is hard to speculate.”
During the 2020 Alabama Legislature Session, a total of seven different laws were proposed banning abortions in the state. However, none of them made it to the governor’s desk.
Flowers believes if the Supreme Court does ban abortions, Alabama Lawmakers will indeed pass some of the strictest abortion laws in the nation. Which could include calling a special session.