Target: U.S. District Judge B. Lynn Winmill
Goal: Thank Judge Winmill for striking down the 20 week abortion ban in Idaho.
Formerly, Idaho was counted as one of ten states with a ban on 20 week abortions. This ban was the consequence of the “fetal pain law.” According to the Supreme Court’s Roe v. Wade ruling, no states are constitutionally allowed to place “undue burden” on women seeking abortions, but that hasn’t stopped conservatives from trying to do so through various unconstitutional bans. Now, these bans are being challenged for the restrictions they place upon reproductive rights.
In the case of Idaho, a woman named Jennie Linn McCormack became an unfortunate victim of the anti-woman legislation when she purchased abortion pills online. She was arrested and could have faced up to five years in prison for this choice, but when the case was appealed to the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals, Judge Harry Pregerson commented that “prosecuting women for terminating pregnancies won’t end abortion, it will just create a whole new class of criminals.” Pregerson is absolutely correct in this assessment, as Jennie Linn McCormack’s case testifies to.
There are many sound medical reasons why a person might abort at 20 weeks or beyond. These reasons can include fetal deformities, missing brains or brain damage, septic pregnancies which have become dangerous to the mother, and many other potential causes. Eight of the states which banned abortions at 20 weeks did not recognize any provisions for “medically futile” pregnancies. Now, Judge Winmill has ruled Idaho’s abortion ban unconstitutional, and pregnant people in Idaho are no longer potential criminals. Sign this petition to thank Judge Winmill for doing away with this “new class of criminals” in Idaho.
Dear Judge Winmill,
I am writing to thank you for striking down Idaho’s unconstitutional “fetal pain” law that banned abortions at or after 20 weeks. By upholding Roe v. Wade’s ruling that such bans place “undue burden” on pregnant people seeking abortions, your ruling will now in effect restore the status of pregnant people within the state of Idaho. Under the 20 week abortion ban, pregnant people seeking medically necessary pregnancy terminations for any number of reasons were treated as criminals, as the case in question proved.
Thank you on behalf of Jennie Linn McCormack and any other pregnant individuals and on behalf of women everywhere. Your ruling has given me hope that many of the unconstitutional abortion bans in other states might now be challenged and overturned. With the seemingly daily barrage of attacks on Roe v. Wade from conservatives, lately it feels as though all news concerning reproductive rights has been terrible. Thank you for finally giving me some good news when it comes to reproductive justice.
[Your Name Here]
Photo credit: User “Producer” via Wikimedia Commons