National news outlets have recently taken an interest in Idaho’s prohibition on elective abortions. It’s not surprising, but it is further proof that the radicalization of our state is being coordinated by far-away organizations and out-of-state money.
Idaho’s prohibition on elective abortions went into effect after the United States Supreme Court issued its decision in Dobbs v Jackson Women’s Health Organization. In that case, the Supreme Court held that the U.S. Constitution does not contain an explicit or implied right to terminate an unwanted pregnancy.
The Supreme Court’s decision reversed a decades-long limitation on states’ ability to legislate sensible and appropriate limitations on terminating a pregnancy. Under the old law, unborn babies could be killed for reasons unrelated to health, including the financial “burden” a baby might impose on a family.
The Dobbs decision enabled Idaho’s lawmakers to craft a sensible legislative framework for protecting the lives of the unborn and the wellbeing of pregnant women. Idaho’s legislative framework expressed the moral imperative that our law protects all human beings, regardless of their age. The Idaho Supreme Court upheld Idaho’s prohibition on elective abortions in light of that moral framework.
Idaho’s neighbors to the west decided to go in a different direction, loosening any semblance of protection for the unborn. The result? 1-in-4 abortions in California are now performed for sex selection reasons — meaning a human life is ended because the developing baby is the “wrong” sex. In Oregon and Washington, minor children, including victims of domestic sex abuse or sex trafficking, can be made to receive an abortion without notification to a parent — allowing instances of rape or abuse to be obscured from families and law enforcement. In fact, neither state requires parental involvement at all before a minor obtains an abortion.
These States were free to pursue this legal and policy course, just as Idaho is free to pursue a pathway that protects the unborn and ensures that the wellbeing of pregnant women is prioritized.
Abortion has been — and is likely to remain — a divisive civic topic. But Idaho’s people and legislators have enacted a framework that works for our families and embodies our commitments to the unborn. The national news apparatus, however, is creating a false narrative to start laying the groundwork to attract money and operatives into our state to undermine our laws and fool our citizens.
Real work must be done by the Republican Party, by legislators, and the organizations dedicated to defending life to educate citizens about their rights and the full implications of the post-Dobbs world. Gone are the days when organizations committed to life can merely walk the hallways of the Capitol and court the votes of legislators. The law has been written and enacted. Our contest now is to inform Idaho’s citizenry and truly build a culture of life.