Anti-abortion countries are divided over how to enforce the ban, whether to prosecute or investigate doctors

Thousands of people took to the streets to protest in New York City.

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Judgment of the Supreme Court overturned Roe v. Wade does not just divide the country into states where abortion is legal and illegal. It also illustrates the sharp divides between anti-abortion states over whether to allow exceptions and how to enforce the law.

Nearly half of the states already have “activation laws” or constitutional amendments to quickly ban abortion following Roe v. Wade’s ruling. However, lawmakers and governors on Sunday illustrated how that could play out differently.

Some states allow exceptions, such as legal abortion to protect the mother’s life. Others are pursuing drastic measures, including prosecuting doctors, looking into the use of abortion pills and traveling to other states to get the procedure done and encouraging private citizens to sue those who help women. abortion.

South Dakota Governor Kristi Noem, a Republican, said the state would not bring criminal charges against the women who had the procedure. She said the state also has no plans to pass laws similar to Texas and Oklahoma, which encourage private citizens to file civil lawsuits against those accused of aiding and abetting abortions. .

“I don’t believe women should be prosecuted,” she said on ABC’s “This Week” on Sunday. “I don’t believe that mothers in this situation should be prosecuted. Now, doctors who intentionally break the law, they should be prosecuted, definitely.”

She said the state has yet to decide how to handle what happens in the event that a South Dakotan goes to another state for an abortion, saying “there will be a debate about that.”

It will be up to each state and state legislators, she added, to decide which law is closer to family.

Arkansas Governor Asa Hutchinson, a Republican, said the state allowed one exception: saving the mother’s life. He directed his Department of Health to enforce the law, but focused on providing resources for women with unwanted pregnancies.

Arkansas law does not include an exception for incest, which would force a 13-year-old child who was raped by a relative to carry a full-term pregnancy. Hutchinson said he disagreed with that.

“I would prefer a different outcome than that,” he said Sunday on NBC’s “Meet the Press.” “That’s not the debate today in Arkansas. It could be in the future.”

Hutchinson said the state would not investigate miscarriages or ban the IUD, a form of contraception that some anti-abortion activists consider an abortion because it can prevent a fertilized egg from implanting in the womb. uterus.

“This is about abortion, that’s what’s triggered, and it’s not about contraception. It’s clear and women should be reassured about that,” he told “Meet the Press.”

In Texas, state law takes a more far-reaching approach. It enforces the abortion ban through lawsuits by private citizens against a doctor or anyone who helps a woman have an abortion, such as a driver taking a pregnant woman to a medical center. .

Oklahoma has a similar ban, enforced by civil lawsuits rather than criminal prosecution.

U.S. Representative Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, a Democrat from New York, and Senator Elizabeth Warren, a Democrat from Massachusetts, said Sunday that all state bans are in effect. had the same end: to steal women’s freedom and endanger their lives.

Ocasio-Cortez points to Arkansas’ public health records, noting that it has one of the highest maternal mortality rates in the country and a high rate of child poverty.

“Forcing women to get pregnant kills them,” she said on “Meet the Press.” “It will kill them, especially in the state of Arkansas, where there is little or no support for life after birth in terms of health care, child care and fighting poverty.”

– by CNBC Jessica Bursztynsky contributed to this report.

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