A flood of laws banning abortions in Republican-run states has handed Democrats a political weapon heading into next year's elections, helping them paint the GOP as extreme and court centrist voters who could decide congressional races in swing states, members of both parties say.
Missouri Gov. Mike Parson on Friday signed a bill that bans abortions on or beyond the eighth week of pregnancy without exceptions for cases of rape or incest, making it among the most restrictive abortion policies in the nation.
State governments are on a course to virtually eliminate abortion access in large chunks of the Deep South and Midwest. Ohio and Kentucky also have passed heartbeat laws; Missouri's Republican-controlled legislature is considering one.
Gov. Andrew Cuomo defended New York's new abortion law Wednesday after it was criticized by President Donald Trump during the State of the Union address, saying Trump and his conservative allies are lying about the law as part of a broader assault on abortion rights.
New York state enacted one of the nation's strongest protections for abortion rights Tuesday, a move that state leaders say was needed to safeguard those rights should the U.S. Supreme Court overturn Roe v. Wade.