Oklahoma legislature passes strictest U.S. abortion ban starting at 'fertilization'
The Oklahoma Legislature on Tuesday approved another pro-life bill, modeled after Texas' law, that abortion providers claim will be the most stringent ban in the United States if it becomes law.
The legislation allows private citizens to sue anyone who assists in an abortion, including abortion providers, from "any stage of gestation from fertilization until birth."
The bill also defines "woman" and "women" as "any person whose biological sex is female, including any person with XX chromosomes and any person with a uterus, regardless of any gender identity that the person attempts to assert or claim." Some on the left have claimed men can get pregnant as well.
Abortions are allowed in cases of "rape, sexual assault, or incest that has been reported to law enforcement." A medical provider may terminate a pregnancy when it is "necessary to save the life of a pregnant woman in a medical emergency" as well.
Planned Parenthood Action has already voiced opposition to the legislation.
"This ban will take effect as soon as the governor signs the bill, making Oklahoma the first state to outlaw abortion entirely — even while Roe v. Wade still stands," the group tweeted, adding that it plans on "taking Oklahoma to court" to stop the ban.
The bill follows a string of abortion restrictions in Oklahoma as the Supreme Court appears likely to overturn Roe v. Wade this year.
Gov. Kevin Stitt (R-Okla.) is expected to sign the bill into law.
He approved another Texas-style law earlier this month law banning abortions after a fetal heartbeat can be detected, which is typically around six weeks of gestation and before a woman knows she is pregnant.
The governor signed another law in April making it illegal to perform abortions except in medical emergencies.
Another anti-abortion law Stitt approved in April makes it a felony to perform an abortion in the state under threat of ten years in prison and a $100,000 fine.
Stitt warned Oklahoma Native American tribes in earlier this week to not open up save haven abortion clinics on tribal lands.