Utah governor signs into law bill to ban abortion after 18 weeks

Gov. Gary Herbert on Monday signed into law a bill to ban abortions in Utah after 18 weeks.

Utah previously allowed abortions up to 22 weeks gestation, but many Utah doctors drew the line at 21 weeks to avoid risk of violating the law. HB136, sponsored by Rep. Cheryl Acton, R-Salt Lake City, originally set the limit for legal abortions at 15 weeks gestation, but the bill was revised in the House.

Support for the bill came despite the likelihood it will be challenged in court.

Across the U.S., new efforts are brewing to challenge Roe v. Wade, the Supreme Court decision that established abortion as a constitutional right. Mississippi last year passed a 15-week abortion law, with exceptions for medical emergency or severe fetal abnormality, but a federal judge blocked it.

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