Planned Parenthood, pro-life activist react to abortion bill passing the House

Published: Sep. 2, 2022 at 4:34 PM EDT|Updated: Sep. 3, 2022 at 11:27 AM EDT
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CHARLESTON, S.C. (WCSC) - As a bill that would ban most abortions in South Carolina gets closer to a final vote, people on both sides are voicing their opinions.

After passing the House Tuesday, the Senate will soon vote on the new law that would essentially ban abortion in the state except for cases of rape or incest.

Molly Rivera, the communications director for Planned Parenthood South Atlantic, says even with the exception, sexual assault victims would only be allowed to have an abortion within the first 12 weeks of pregnancy. She says they are then required to report the abortion to law enforcement within 24 hours.

“I mean, this bill almost completely bans abortion,” Rivera said. “And in addition to that, this current exception that’s carved out in the bill is so narrow that it’s not going to help the majority of survivors of sexual assault who decide they want to end their pregnancy.”

Jessica Carrigan-Broda, a pro-life activist, says she stands outside of the Planned Parenthood in West Ashley every Friday and Saturday praying for the mothers. She says with her background as an attorney with a specialty in child abuse and domestic violence, she has seen perpetrators hide their crimes with abortions.

“I feel confident that it’s going to go for a vote in the Senate and I do hope... to me, abortion is equivalent to murder,” Carrigan-Broda said. “Human life starts at conception. We have a duty as a society to protect the innocent.”

Gov. Henry McMaster has not responded to a request for comment about Tuesday’s bill. However, he has stated in the past that he would like to see a day where there are no abortions in the state.

Both Rivera and Carrigan-Broda have their own perspectives on this.

“I think that would be - I would be in full agreement with that,” Carrigan-Broda said. “And I would like to see, again, it’s not so much preventing women from having access to abortion. It’s making sure that women, once they’re pregnant, have help, have support. What are the things we need to do to make it so that women feel safe and strong and able to have children.”

“Gov. McMaster believes in controlling people’s lives without exception,” Rivera said. “And that, no matter your personal view on abortion, the lengths to which the governor goes to block people from healthcare and take control of their bodies should really concern us all.”

This bill will make its way to the Senate on Wednesday for a final vote.