This should have been a crime from day one in my opinion. However, finally on Wednesday, Idaho Governor Brad Little signed House Bill 242 into law, which makes it a felony to help a minor travel to another state for an abortion without parental consent. This law is designed to prevent minors from being taken across state lines to obtain an abortion without the knowledge or consent of their parents or guardians. Those who break this law could face up to five years in prison.
Governor Little clarified that the law does not restrict interstate travel or prohibit adults from getting abortions. It only applies to unemancipated minor girls who are taken across state lines for an abortion without parental consent. The law allows for an affirmative defense if the parent or guardian of the pregnant minor consents to the travel. However, Democrats are concerned that the lack of clarity around who qualifies as a parent could create legal confusion.
Planned Parenthood and other groups are expected to challenge the law in court, arguing that it is harmful legislation. Supporters of the bill believe it is necessary to protect minors from being trafficked for abortions. Republican Rep. Barbara Ehardt, who sponsored the bill, is ready to address any legal backlash against the bill.
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