TALLAHASSEE, FLORIDA — On Thursday evening, DeSantis landed in Florida’s capital after a day of political appearances and signed the Republican majority’s pro-life legislation – including a six-week abortion ban – into law.
“Signed the Heartbeat Protection Act, which expands pro-life protections and devotes resources to help young mothers and families,” the governor wrote on social media.
“ABORTION HAVEN” ENDS
Following the Supreme Court’s Dobbs decision overturning the federal right to abortion, Democrats said Florida would be a haven for abortion access. At least 4,000 people traveled to Florida to get abortions from as far away as Texas, Mississippi, Tennessee and Alabama, according to Politico.
But DeSantis, who is likely preparing for a presidential run, has been unwavering in his support for the unborn. Last night’s move effectively ends Florida’s reputation as a haven for people seeking abortions in the South.
The measure, filed by Rep. Jenna Persons-Mulicka (R-Fort Myers) in the House and Senator Erin Grall (R-Vero Beach) in the Senate aligns Florida with 12 other states, including Georgia, in limiting abortion on demand.
“WE CARE DEEPLY ABOUT LIFE”
This pro-life legislation “is one piece of a larger mission to stand with our families in Florida,” said Persons-Mulicka. “Our work is not easy, but it is worth it because we are talking about the importance and value of the life of innocent unborn human beings.”
Other provisions in the bill include directing $5 million to the Department of Health for programs that promote contraception and $15 million for programs that support new parents, such as diapers, clothing, car seats and counseling.
“Here in the state of Florida, we care deeply about life and we care about the most vulnerable in our society – babies in the womb,” said Jennifer Rep. Canady (R-Lakeland), who co-sponsored the legislation in the House.
Although the bill became law, the six-week abortion ban will not go into effect until the Florida Supreme Court weighs in on a challenge to last year’s 15-week ban. Groups who oppose the ban cite a decades-old state privacy clause that previous justices used to uphold abortion access.
A Supreme Court decision is expected sometime this year, but in the meantime, Florida continues to enforce the 15-week ban.