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Abortion Ban


Iowa has an unconstitutional and unenforceable ban that outlaws abortion procedures as early as 12 weeks.  Iowa Code Ann. § 707.8A (Enacted 1998).

A court held that Iowa's ban is unconstitutional because it imposes an undue burden on women seeking abortion care and has issued a permanent injunction prohibiting its enforcement.  Planned Parenthood of Greater Iowa, Inc. v. Miller, 195 F.3d 386 (8th Cir. 1999), cert. denied, 530 U.S. 1274 (2000).  The U.S. Supreme Court held that a similar ban that has no exception to protect a woman's health and that bans more than one procedure is unconstitutional.  Stenberg v. Carhart, 530 U.S. 914 (2000).

Iowa's unconstitutional law makes any abortion procedure that falls within a broad definition a felony punishable by imprisonment up to 10 years and a fine of $1,000 to $10,000.  The law has an exception if an abortion is necessary to preserve the life of a woman endangered by a physical disorder, physical illness, or physical injury.  Iowa Code Ann. § 707.8A (Enacted 1998).

There is also a Federal Abortion Ban, which applies nationwide regardless of state law.  The federal ban prohibits certain second-trimester abortion procedures and has no exception for a woman's health.  In April 2007, the U.S. Supreme Court upheld the ban, making it the first time since Roe v. Wade that the court has upheld a ban on a previability abortion procedure. Click here to read more about the Federal Abortion Ban.

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