- North Carolina Gov. Roy Cooper vetoed a bill to ban nearly all abortions after the first trimester.
- GOP legislative leaders in the state’s General Assembly have vowed to override Cooper’s veto.
- The bill included exceptions and extended timelines for cases of rape, incest, and fetal anomalies.
North Carolina Gov. Roy Cooper vetoed a bill that would have banned nearly all abortions there after the first trimester.
At the state capitol in Raleigh on Saturday, the Democrat stamped his veto on the bill before an audience of about 1,000 pro-abortion rights activists, The Associated Press reported. About 70 anti-abortion activists gathered across the street in prayer, the outlet reported.
“This bill will create dangerous interference with the doctor-patient relationship leading to harm for pregnant women and their families. With its medically unnecessary obstacles and restrictions, it will make abortions unavailable to many women,” Cooper said. “Therefore I veto this bill.”
The bill included exceptions in its 12-week ban, permitting abortions through 20 weeks for victims of rape and incest and through 24 weeks for “life-limiting” fetal complications, the AP reported.
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“Standing in the way of progress right now is this Republican supermajority legislature that only took 48 hours to turn the clock back 50 years on women’s health,” Cooper said, according to WNCN-TV, a local CBS affiliate.
The veto is sure to initiate a legislative showdown as conservatives in the state’s General Assembly hold a veto-proof majority with 72 out of 120 seats in the House and 30 out of 50 seats in the Senate.
“I look forward to promptly overriding his veto,” Phil Berger, leader of the Senate, told the AP in a statement.
In a tweet celebrating that the ban had been vetoed, Cooper said, “Let’s work to keep it that way.”
To the crowd of abortion-rights activists at the state capitol, he remained optimistic.
“We’re going to have to kick it into an even higher gear when that veto stamp comes down,” Cooper told the crowd, according to the AP. “If just one Republican in either the House or the Senate keeps a campaign promise to protect women’s reproductive health, we can stop this ban.”