Governor John Bel Edwards signed legislation on Tuesday, June 21, 2022, that would criminalize abortions in Louisiana.

Abortion has been a hot topic lately since the news broke from the United States Supreme Court that they may be leaning towards overturning Roe v. Wade this summer.

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Senate Bill 342, which was signed by Gov. John Bel Edwards, updates the 2006 abortion “trigger laws” for Louisiana. This bill harshens criminal penalties for those that perform abortions. It also doubles the maximum sentences from 10 to 15 years depending on when an abortion is performed. However, it does exclude women from prosecution if they do have an abortion. While this bill also does not have any exceptions for pregnancies that come out of rape or incest, it does include an exception for “medically futile and ectopic pregnancies.”

“My position on abortion has been unwavering,” Edwards said in a statement. “I am pro-life and have never hidden from that fact. This does not belie my belief that there should be an exception to the prohibition on abortion for victims of rape and incest.”

There has been a lot of confusion surrounding whether pregnancy begins at implantation or at fertilization. Gov. John Bel Edwards believes that this bill will help clear that issue up.

“However, vetoing Senate Bill 342 would not accomplish that end. In fact, vetoing Senate Bill 342 would leave fewer exceptions in place than if the bill becomes law and would further confuse whether pregnancy begins at fertilization or implantation. For these reasons, I have signed Senate Bill 342 into law.”

Louisiana has received a lot of criticism since our “trigger laws” are one of the harshest in the country.

If Roe v. Wade is overturned then this law would take effect immediately.

The United States Supreme Court is expected to rule on Roe V. Wade by the end of the month.