Texas

Here are the main differences between the Mississippi abortion law and Texas Senate Bill 8.

What are the key differences between the laws passed by Mississippi and Texas?

Mississippi’s “Gestational Age Law” prohibits abortions after 15 weeks, except in cases of medical emergencies and cases of serious fetal abnormalities.

Texas Senate Bill 8 would ban abortions after six weeks, except when a medical emergency is required.

None of the prohibitions contain provisions for incest or rape.

Mississippi law allows medical license officials to revoke licenses from those who violate it. The law states that those who violate commit “an act of unprofessional conduct, and his or her license to practice medicine in the State of Mississippi shall be suspended or revoked in accordance with the decision of the Mississippi Board of Medical Licensing.”

In addition, the State Attorney General “shall have the authority to bring action at law or in equity to enforce the provisions of this section on behalf of the director of the Mississippi Department of Health or the Mississippi Medical Licensing Board. The Mississippi Medical Licensing Board also has the authority to file such a claim on its own behalf.”

The law requires every abortion performed to be reported through the system, and those who falsely report will be subject to a $500 fine per offence.

Texas law makes performing the procedure a felony punishable by up to life in prison and a fine of at least $100,000. There are no exceptions for rape, incest or fetal anomaly – only for cases where the life of the pregnant woman is in danger.

Texas’s abortion ban, which explicitly relies on private citizens to enforce the law, gives them the right to sue anyone who “assists or abets” an abortion, not just service providers as outlined in the Mississippi law.

So far, the new approach to enforcement has withstood all legal tests, largely because it doesn’t rely on government officials to enforce it. Most recently, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the 5th Circuit dismissed the case after it went to the Texas Supreme Court over the issue of medical license officials. The state’s highest court said they have no authority to issue reprimands to those who break the rules.

Those who file a lawsuit against anyone who “assists or abets” an unlawful abortion can file a lawsuit for up to $10,000.

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