New Iowa Constitution Update States it Secures “No Right” to an Abortion

The Iowa Senate is pushing to further limit the ability for women to receive a medical abortion.

The new bill states: “The Constitution of the State of Iowa does not recognize, grant, or secure a right to abortion or require the public funding of abortion.” Students at AHS have different opinions on the passing of this bill.

Library of Congress

The new bill states: “The Constitution of the State of Iowa does not recognize, grant, or secure a right to abortion or require the public funding of abortion.” Students at AHS have different opinions on the passing of this bill.

Brynna Kern, Editor

The Iowa Senate is pushing to further limit the ability for women to receive a medical abortion. The Iowa law being debated declared to “defend and protect unborn children.” According to The Des Moines Register his law will not come into effect until another vote by the House in 2024, and then it will be released for the public’s vote. House Joint Resolution 5 would change the current law, which was changed in 2018, stating Iowa citizens have a right to a medical abortion until the heartbeat is detected. 

Resolution 5 states: “The Constitution of the State of Iowa does not recognize, grant, or secure a right to abortion or require the public funding of abortion.” This resolution would put the tightest restrictions on abortion in Iowa since Roe V. Wade became law in 1973.

The bill also requires doctors to tell women about alternatives to abortions before conducting the procedure. The woman would then have to sign a written consent form saying she has heard these things from the doctor before the procedure can take place. Opponents of the resolution have voiced concerns about the ethics of the bill, as it intrudes on a highly personal doctor-patient situation.

I think every woman should have a right to an abortion, so I wish they would loosen up on the law”

This bill was debated in the Iowa Capitol building on February 1 with a vote of 55-44, with one representative absent. This vote held three Republicans voting “no,” while others tried to find other ways to make an amendment that doesn’t ban abortion completely. Some ideas included exceptions in rape and incest (Rep. Marti Anderson), life-threatening instances for the mother (Rep. Mary Wolfe), keeping birth control (Rep. Amy Nielsen), and/or not “prohibit or affect the disposition of unused embryos for the purposes of in vitro fertilization” (Rep. Kristin Sunde). 

Senior Riveá Keen expressed her opinion about this new Iowa law. Keen said, “Personally, I am not a fan of (the proposed restrictions) and that is where I fall. I feel as though women should have the right to an abortion.” Keen explained that when she heard about this new law she had a lot of upset feelings and frustrations about the limitations put on women. If she could change this law she said, “I think it would be better, even with the heartbeat law,” which prohibits abortion after a heartbeat is detected. “I think every woman should have a right to an abortion, so I wish they would loosen up on the law,” Keen said. She shared her concerns on the obligation for doctors to discuss details of abortion to women before their procedure and said, “I don’t know that all doctors could be trusted to handle that ethically. If it was handled ethically 100% of the time, I don’t think that there would be anything wrong with that.”  

I personally believe that abortion is not a matter of a woman’s right to choose, but it is a matter of life or death of a human being.”

— Bri Wilson

Senior Bri Wilson said that this was a difficult topic to discuss because of its controversy and different beliefs towards the abortion topic. Wilson explained, “I personally believe that abortion is not a matter of a woman’s right to choose, but it is a matter of life or death of a human being. As horrible as it would be to become pregnant from rape or incest, two wrongs don’t make a right.” Wilson said that women had different options instead of having an abortion, like adoption, early induced delivery, or a C-section. Wilson said, “I believe that late-term abortions are wrong, and so if abortion is necessary, it needs to be early on in the pregnancy… If the life of the mother is genuinely at risk, a decision like this should be decided between the mother and the doctor.” Although she shares that she would never herself have an abortion, she acknowledged the fact that other women have the right to choose.