Attorneys present oral arguments over ‘Fetal Heartbeat’ bill

Published: Apr. 11, 2023 at 6:11 PM CDT
Email This Link
Share on Pinterest
Share on LinkedIn

DES MOINES, Iowa (KCRG) - Attorneys presented oral arguments to the highest court in the state Tuesday morning on what’s known as the “heartbeat bill.”

Governor Kim Reynolds signed it into law in 2018. It banned abortions at roughly six weeks into a pregnancy.

Five years ago, the law was put on hold - after the Iowa Supreme court ruled abortion was a constitutional right.

Now the governor is trying to lift the hold after the US Supreme Court overturned Roe v. Wade last summer.

Chris Schandevel, an attorney for the Christian Right legal group, ADF, referenced this in his arguments, saying there has been a substantial change in the law based on the 2022 overturning of Roe versus Wade that justify dissolving the injunction.

“We already know that it is constitutional under the federal constitution,” Schandevel told TV-9. “So if the court does hold as we’ve argued that the law is constitutional, we’ve asked the Iowa Supreme court to direct the lower court to issue an order dissolving the injunction that prevents the governor and the board of medicine from enforcing that law going forward.”

Peter Im, the attorney with Planned Parenthood argued before the court as well. He said the injunction should remain in place because the state has attempted to reinstate the 2018 law without going through proper legal procedures.

“We’re very hopeful on those merits, we’re hopeful that the judges really will take our arguments into consideration and will keep the ban enjoined and keep reproductive health care access for all Iowans,” said Im.

In his arguments, Im said the court has not stated a new legal standard to review this law and it still needs to be reviewed. For those reasons, he says lifting the injunction remains unconstitutional and should remain blocked.

The court might not issue a ruling in the case until late June.