Heartbeat bill faces lawsuits

In+May%2C+Governor+Reynolds+signed+the+%27fetal+heartbeat%27+bill%2C+which+has+been+held+due+to+numerous+pending+lawsuits.
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Heartbeat bill faces lawsuits

In May, Governor Reynolds signed the 'fetal heartbeat' bill, which has been held due to numerous pending lawsuits.

In May, Governor Reynolds signed the 'fetal heartbeat' bill, which has been held due to numerous pending lawsuits.

PEXELS

In May, Governor Reynolds signed the 'fetal heartbeat' bill, which has been held due to numerous pending lawsuits.

PEXELS

PEXELS

In May, Governor Reynolds signed the 'fetal heartbeat' bill, which has been held due to numerous pending lawsuits.

ALLISON MAZZARELLA, Staff Writer

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Back in May, Governor Kim Reynolds signed the ‘fetal heartbeat’ bill, which contains strict restrictions on women seeking abortions if a fetal heartbeat has been detected after an ultrasound.   

The bill was scheduled to go into effect on July 1, but has been temporarily blocked due to lawsuits filed by Planned Parenthood of the Heartland and American Civil Liberties Union of Iowa, who have deemed the bill as unconstitutional.

According to the Des Moines Register, it has been called “the most restrictive abortion ban in the nation,” since a heartbeat can typically be detected as early as six weeks, before many women know they are pregnant.  The bill offers some exceptions in cases of rape, incest, or fetal abnormalities.

Strong reactions have been elicited by supporters and those who are against the bill.

Shaylyn Trenkamp, vice president of the Northern Iowa Feminists shared her reaction.

“I was disappointed,” said Trenkamp. “Having a woman governor, you would think she’s going to stand up for women’s rights and for the power of choice for women, but this bill takes away women’s choice, the power of their own bodies, and the power of their own choices.

Governor Reynolds tweeted on May 4, “If death is determined when a heart stops beating, then doesn’t a beating heart indicate life?  For me, it is immoral to stop an innocent beating heart.  For me, it is sickening to sell fetal body parts.  For me, my faith leads me to protect every Iowan.”

Amanda Bruns, a sophomore studying social sciences education, echoes Reynolds’ words.

“That’s a person, and I think someone needs to speak on their behalf,” Bruns said.  My mom chose life, and I want to be able to speak for them, because they can’t speak for themselves.”

Governor Reynolds’ words concerned Trenkamp, who said Reynolds depends on her faith, which may not represent the people’s view whom she governs.

“She represents a lot of people with different faiths and different backgrounds,” Trenkamp said. “While I would want to respect that, it’s hard for me to hear that that’s her basic motive or reasoning when she’s representing so many people with different views and different faiths.”

Trenkamp said she believes the root issue is not determining when life begins, but rather, taking away the voices of women and telling them what they are and are not allowed to do with their own bodies.

“You can claim the heartbeat is a life, but the primary life I am concerned about is the woman who might be carrying that child,” Trenkamp said. “This is her life that is going to be affected either way, and if we start giving voice to a being inside of her over her voice, it starts to insinuate that women in society making life decisions aren’t valued as much as people who might be coming into this world.”

Trenkamp believes the ramifications of this law will lead to unsafe abortions. While Trenkamp recognizes Reynolds’ faith and moral decisions, she believes women should be able to make the decision for themselves if an abortion is their best option.

Bruns said that if the question is about voice, that the unborn has a voice that should be advocated for.

“The baby has rights, it’s great if we say women have rights, but what about the baby?” Bruns said.

The law was placed on hold by a judge and will be on hold until lawsuits have been processed.

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