MASON CITY, Iowa - All eyes are now on Iowa Governor Kim Reynolds after the House and Senate passed a controversial bill late Tuesday night regarding abortion.
Known as the 'Fetal Heartbeat Bill', Senate File 359 would ban all abortions following the presence of a fetal heartbeat, which is typically around 6 weeks into the pregnancy. The bill would become the most restrictive abortion law in the country, surpassing Mississippi's 15 week law.
If Reynolds signs the bill into law, it could have far reaching implications for not just the state, but the entire country.
Chris Kerdus personally sits in the middle on the issue, but believes that if the law is signed, Iowa could set an example for similar laws nationwide.
"Church/county is definitely gonna be the first place it should touch down as far as sparking movement across the country. But I think that in a more open minded politically like correct community, anywhere in America is going to look at it as free choice of being able whatever you personally want," Kerdus says.
Kerdus is pro-choice, but points out that doesn't exactly mean he is in favor of abortion.
"Being pro-choice isn't necessarily being against abortion or for abortion. It's just going to be giving someone the right to decide what they have to do in a hard situation," Kerdus adds.
The bill, which the House passed the bill 51 to 46 and the Senate voted in favor 29 to 17 after hours of debate, would require doctors to conduct an ultrasound, and if a heartbeat is found, an abortion cannot be performed. The exception to the law would be rape or incest, and if it's reported to authorities within 45 days.
Lionel Foster, Jr. believes that the government interference goes too far by passing the bill.
"The government tries to get in wherever they can, and...it's gotta stop somewhere," Foster, Jr. says.
And Kerdus agrees.
"With there being so little advantages to healthcare and poverty and what you're making for the hourly, I don't think anybody, especially a potential dictatorship's gonna be in charge of what you can spend your money on and how you have to live your life," Kerdus adds.
Governor Reynolds has not yet indicated whether she plans to sign the bill into law, but is known for her anti-abortion views.
The legislation is sure to face a legal battle to determine if it violates rulings made by the U.S. Supreme Court regarding abortions.
Those in the House who voted for the measure include speaker Linda Upmeyer, Tedd Gassman, Terry Baxter and Senator Waylon Brown, all of whom are Republican, while those who voted no include Republican Jane Bloomingdale, and Democrats Todd Prichard, Sharon Steckman and Senator Amanda Ragan.
- Fetal heartbeat bill one step closer to Iowa law
- Fetal Heartbeat bill passes subcommittee
- No appeal of Iowa fetal heartbeat ruling
- Judge agrees to halt fetal heartbeat abortion law in Iowa
- Iowa governor opts not to appeal fetal heartbeat law ruling
- UPDATE: Iowa's 'fetal heartbeat' bill struck down by judge
- Iowa House Republicans add fetal heartbeat to separate bill
- Iowa's 'fetal heartbeat' abortion restriction declared unconstitutional
- Iowa Senate passes "unborn person" fetal homicide bill
- Groups ask Iowa judge to rule against heartbeat abortion law