SD Senate Passes Tough Abortion Pill Bill, But Ties Enactment To Outcome Of Court Case

    The South Dakota Senate has passed and sent to Gov. Kristi Noem a bill that makes the state one of the hardest places in the U.S. to get abortion pills, but it won’t go into effect unless the state prevails in a federal court battle. 

    The bill requires women seeking an abortion to make three separate trips to a doctor in order to take abortion pills and it bars them from getting the pills through a telemedicine consultation.

      Every Senate Republican voted for the bill, which passed 32-2 even though it has a provision keeping most of it from taking effect unless the state convinces a federal judge to lift a preliminary injunction against a similar rule imposed by Noem last year.

       Planned Parenthood sued to stop the earlier executive order and the judge last month granted the temporary injunction to keep the restrictions from taking effect until the full challenge is decided.

       Supporters of the bill argued it’s a safety measure because it guarantees a doctor will be on hand if a woman has immediate complications from the pills. Noem tweeted it will “protect both unborn babies and their mothers from this dangerous procedure.”

     The Food and Drug Administration says studies of abortion pills, which are used in about 40% of all abortions in the US, found that complications from their use are extremely rare.