Where is abortion illegal in US? Which states have banned abortion


Every state in America can now choose its abortion law following a ruling in Dobbs v. Jackson Women’s Health

It is expected that abortions could be banned in up to half of America’s 50 states as a result of the new ruling in a case called Dobbs v. Jackson Women’s Health.


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So what happened in both the Roe v Wade case and the Dobbs v Jackson women’s health case and where abortion is now legal and illegal in the US.

Here’s what you need to know.

Some American states have banned abortion since the Roe v Wade Act was repealed.

Is abortion illegal in America?

No, abortion is not illegal across America.


There are 50 states in America, and each state will now be able to make its own decision on whether or not to allow abortion after the U.S. Supreme Court ruled on Friday, June 24 that the constitutional right to abolished abortion.

This happened almost 50 years after the inception of the law and after the historic quashing of the Roe v Wade court case.


It is expected to lead to abortion bans in about half of the states.

However, traveling out of states for an abortion remains legal, according to a website affiliated with Planned Parenthood, the United States’ sex health care organization.


What is Roe v Wade?

Roe v Wade was a landmark Supreme Court case that led to abortion being legalized in the United States in 1973.


However, each state still had its own legal guidelines on abortion, with some being far more restrictive than others.

The decision ultimately gave women complete autonomy to terminate a pregnancy during the first trimester and allowed some state influence over second and third trimester abortions, although a number of restrictions were imposed at the state level.


The Supreme Court’s 7-2 decision at the time was based in part on the US Constitution’s 14th Amendment, the right to privacy, which protects a woman’s right to an abortion.

The verdict effectively revoked laws outright banning the process and sparked decades of debate about women’s bodies, the right to vote and the right to life.


Why was Roe v Wade repealed?

The court’s decision in Dobbs v. Jackson Women’s Health in the Supreme Court on Friday, June 24 reversed the earlier decision in Roe v. Wade.


Dobbs v. Jackson Women’s Health Organization was the first major abortion rights challenge before the court’s new conservative supermajority with its three most recent judges.

In an unprecedented leak of conservative judge Samuel Alito’s draft opinion, first reported by Politicallyhe said: “It is time to respect the Constitution and return the issue of abortion to the elected representatives of the people”.


The court’s decision of Friday, June 24 was essentially the same opinion as the draft.

Can the Roe v Wade overturn be appealed?


The possibilities to challenge the judges’ verdict or to defend constitutional arguments on the basis of equality are limited for the time being.

Harvard constitutional law professor Lawrence Tribe, who called the decision “unprincipled”, told the Guardian: “We face a long, convoluted, chaotic and, in terms of human suffering, horribly costly battle.


He added that it could take generations to fully restore abortion rights, but there may be ways to minimize the ruling’s impact.

The ruling may force pregnant women in certain states that now ban abortion to carry their pregnancies to term unless they can travel to some states that have abortion protections.


What were abortion rules in the US before Roe v Wade?

Prior to Row v Wade, 30 states had outright bans on abortion, and while all 50 states complied with the then federal decision decriminalizing abortion, many enacted laws restricting abortion as much as the law permitted.


Prior to Dobbs v. Jackson, state laws prohibiting or severely restricting access to abortion fell into three broad categories.

  • Trigger bans that banned abortion in most circumstances and are now back in effect Roe v Wade were overruled
  • Bans, which are old laws that are still on the books and could be enforced now
  • More recently, legislation has been passed restricting or outlawing abortion to an early gestational age.

However, abortion was made illegal in several US states within hours of Roe v Wade’s repeal.


Where is abortion banned in the US?

Following the June 24 ruling, nearly all abortions are now banned in the states of Alabama, Arkansas, Kentucky, Louisiana, Missouri, Oklahoma, South Dakota, Utah and Wisconsin The New York Times tracker.


Among the first states to ban almost all abortions after the ruling was Utah, where the abortion ban went into effect on the evening of June 24.

Republican Utah Senator Daniel McCay said it would be wrong for Utah women to request abortions in neighboring states, but added that he had no immediate plans to stop them from doing so.


Ohio’s ban on most abortions at the first detectable fetal heartbeat, known as the “Heartbeat Bill,” also went into effect Friday.

The 2019 law has been on hold for nearly three years, but following the Supreme Court’s announcement, a federal judge agreed to lift a federal court injunction that was blocking it.


Alabama was quick to halt abortions when its state abortion ban went into effect in 2019.

It is now a punishable offense to have an abortion at any stage of pregnancy, including in the case of rape and incest victims.


Shortly after the announcement, the Arkansas Department of Health informed the state’s two abortion providers that abortions are now prohibited under a law that prohibits all abortions except in cases where one is necessary to protect the life of the mother in a medical emergency.

Facilities were warned that performing an abortion after June 24 would be against the law and would be punishable by up to 10 years in prison and a fine of up to $100,000.


The only abortion clinic in West Virginia also ceased performing abortions on the date of the decision. The state has a law that criminalizes performing abortions and carries a sentence of three to ten years in prison. It is unclear how it will carry out this enforcement.

In Missouri, Attorney General Eric Schmitt said he was acting immediately to enforce a state law banning abortions except in “medical emergencies” following the ruling.


In some states, including Arizona and Texas, abortion clinics temporarily halted performing abortions while they reviewed the legality of continuing.

Trigger laws are already in effect in several states, including Arkansas, Missouri and South Dakota.


Some states have laws that predated the Roe v Wade ruling and have not been enforced since. Whether these laws come into force could depend on the current political orientation on the ground.

In states like West Virginia and Arizona, Republicans may be more likely to push for enforcement or ask a court to let previously contested laws go into effect.


Here are all the states where abortion is already banned or restricted:

  • Alabama
  • Arkansas
  • Kentucky
  • Louisiana
  • Missouri
  • Oklahoma
  • South Dakota
  • Utah
  • Wisconsin
  • Ohio

Here are all the states where abortion will or will be banned or restricted in the coming days, weeks and months:

  • Idaho
  • Mississippi
  • North Dakota
  • Tennessee
  • Texas
  • West Virginia
  • Wyoming
  • Arizona
  • Florida
  • Georgia
  • South Carolina

Where is abortion continuing in the US?

Not all states in America have responded to the verdict with a ban on abortion.


In fact, several states vowed to protect abortion rights after the decision was announced.

In Washington DC, Mayor Muriel Bowser declared the city a “pro-choice city” but warned that as a district, not a state, it is now at risk because Congress has oversight.


The Democratic governors of California, Washington and Oregon have also vowed to protect abortion rights and help women traveling to the West Coast from other states for abortions.

They made a “multi-state commitment” and said they would work together to defend patients and healthcare workers who perform abortions, as they anticipate an influx of people wanting an abortion.


They also pledged to protect “against the cooperation of the judiciary and local law enforcement agencies with extrastate investigations, investigations and arrests” regarding abortion in their states.

Republican Massachusetts Governor Charlie Baker signed an executive order protecting access to reproductive health care.


In North Carolina, Democratic Gov. Roy Cooper has also vowed to protect abortion rights, even though Republicans control the legislature.

In New Mexico, where abortion is readily available, chief prosecutor and Democratic nominee for attorney general Raúl Torrez called on politicians to take more action to protect women’s access to abortion, including for women from other states.


In states like Michigan and Wisconsin, pre-Roe v Wade abortion bans are still technically part of state law. However, the Democrats, who hold the offices of governor and attorney general, may not be interested in enforcing them.

The Wisconsin Attorney General said he would not enforce the state ban, but clinics offering abortions suspended services on June 24.


Here are all the states where abortion is legal or likely to be allowed to continue:

  • Alaska
  • Colorado
  • Illinois
  • Maine
  • Massachusetts
  • Minnesota
  • Nevada
  • New Hampshire
  • New Mexico
  • Rhode Island
  • California
  • Connecticut
  • direct current
  • Delaware
  • Hawaii
  • Maryland
  • New Jersey
  • new York
  • Oregon
  • Vermont
  • Washington

Is the abortion law in any US state unclear?


At the time of writing, abortion stance in some US states was unclear.

Legislators in some states have shown an interest in restricting abortion, while others want to protect abortion rights in the short term.


In some states, pre-Roe v Wade laws banning abortion before the 1973 decision could be re-enforced, but that decision has not yet been made.

These are the states where the law remains unclear:

  • Indiana
  • Iowa
  • Kansas
  • Michigan
  • Montana
  • Nebraska
  • North Carolina
  • Pennsylvania
  • Virginia