JACKSON, Miss. (AP) – Mississippi Gov. Phil Bryant is signing a bill banning a commonly used second-trimester abortion procedure, setting the state up for a possible legal challenge.
House Bill 519, signed Friday, outlaws a procedure called dilation and evacuation unless an abortion is required to prevent a mother’s irreversible physical impairment. It would prohibit abortions extracting a live fetus in pieces using instruments such as clamps and forceps.
The bill’s supporters describe the procedure as dismemberment and say it’s unnecessarily cruel.
Diane Derzis, who owns Mississippi’s lone abortion clinic, says the state is inviting an expensive lawsuit. Her clinic does abortions up to 15 weeks’ gestation.
State courts have blocked similar laws in Kansas and Oklahoma. West Virginia lawmakers overrode a governor’s veto last month to pass a similar law.