Illegal abortions may lead to ten years in jail in Mississippi

The governor signed a bill that would criminalize abortion in the event that the U.S. Supreme Court overturns its own 1973 decision that legalized the procedure nationwide.

The measure would ban nearly all abortions in the state if the Supreme Court were to overturn Roe v. Wade. In that event, anyone performing an illegal abortion in Mississippi would face one to 10 years in prison.

The bill also tightens consent laws for minors and requires abortion providers to perform a sonogram and give the pregnant woman an opportunity to listen to a fetal heartbeat.

The only exceptions to the state ban would be in cases of rape or if the pregnancy threatened the woman's life. The bill has no exception for pregnancies caused by incest.

Anti-abortion activists and some lawmakers believe that with the recent appointments of new, conservative justices to the Supreme Court, Roe v. Wade could be overturned, reports AP.

Mississippi is one of many states revisiting the abortion debate. South Carolina lawmakers are considering a bill that would require women to view ultrasound images of their fetuses.

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