Pritzker Signs Expansion of Abortion Rights Into Illinois Law - NBC Chicago
Ward Room
Covering Chicago's nine political influencers

Pritzker Signs Expansion of Abortion Rights Into Illinois Law

    processing...

    NEWSLETTERS

    Pritzker Signs Expansion of Abortion Rights Into Illinois Law

    Illinois Gov. J.B. Pritzker signed into law Wednesday legislation expanding abortion rights across the state. NBC 5's Mary Ann Ahern reports.

    (Published Wednesday, June 12, 2019)

    Illinois Gov. J.B. Pritzker signed into law Wednesday legislation expanding abortion rights across the state. 

    Pritzker signed the Reproductive Health Act in a ceremony at 10 a.m. at the Chicago Cultural Center, according to his public schedule. He had previously vowed to sign the bill when it passed both chambers of the legislature late last month. 

    It makes Illinois' abortion law among the nation's most sweeping in response to action in at least six Republican-controlled states in recent weeks that sharply restricts access to the procedure.

    Illinois House Adopts Abortion ProtectionsIllinois House Adopts Abortion Protections

    The Illinois House has endorsed expanded abortion protections as a half-dozen other states strive to restrict the procedure. NBC 5's Mary Ann Ahern reports.

    (Published Tuesday, May 28, 2019)

    The measure would rescind prohibitions on some late-term abortions and 45-year-old criminal restraints such as criminal penalties for doctors performing abortions, all measures whose enforcement has been prohibited by court orders.

    The restrictions adopted after the 1973 U.S. Supreme Court decision in Roe v. Wade that legalized abortion have never been enforced Illinois because of court injunctions. 

    The bill's sponsors warned that its protections would be necessary should the landmark Roe v. Wade decision be overturned.  

    Outnumbered Republicans denounced the plan, contending it so loosens definitions of fetal viability and doctors' responsibility in determining the medical need for an abortion that it broadly expands late-term terminations that are not medically necessary.

    "With reproductive health care under attack across the country, we must do everything in our power to protect women's rights in Illinois," Pritzker said in a statement after the bill passed the House. "Today was a major step forward for every woman in this state."

    Illinois joins Democratic-led states such as Nevada, New York and Vermont with efforts to reinforce abortion rights in advance of the potential abandonment of Roe.

    State Abortion Bans by Gestational Age

    A wave of states have introduced, passed and signed new legislation to add tighter restrictions to abortion timeframes and procedures. Some of the so-called "heartbeat bills" can prohibit abortion up to 6 weeks of pregnancy. Click on each state to find out more.

    Data: Guttmacher Institute.
    Map: Danielle Abreu, Nina Lin 
    Last updated: June 6, 2019

    Get the latest from NBC Chicago anywhere, anytime

    • Download the NBC Chicago App

      Download the App

      Available for iOS and Android