The Louisiana State Senate approved a near-total ban on abortion on Wednesday, allowing abortion only to save a woman's life. This ban demonstrates the strong anti-choice politics of the Senate, as there were no arguments against the ban, but only questions of whether to include exceptions for cases of rape and incest. An amendment to include rape and incest exceptions was defeated.
The ban does not punish women directly, but would fine anyone who performs an abortion between $10,000 and $100,000, a jail term of one to ten years, or a combination of a fine and jail time. The ban is a trigger law, meaning it will only go into effect if Roe v. Wade is overturned.
The bill will now move to the House of Representatives. Governor Kathleen Blanco has told reporters she would sign “some kind of abortion bill,” reports the Times-Picayune and that she appreciates the trigger law, as it would prevent the kinds of lawsuits that resulted in Louisiana’s previous abortion ban being declared unconstitutional.
4/17/2014 Supreme Court of India Recognizes Transgender Rights - India's Supreme Court ruled Tuesday that official documents must allow transgender people to identify as a third gender and directed the federal and state governments to include transgender people, known as hijras, in welfare programs such as education, health care, and job programs.
"All documents will now have a third category marked 'transgender,'" said Laxmi Narayan Tripathi, a transgender activist who petitioned the court. . . .