Roe v. Wade: Alabama AG Steve Marshall halts abortions, says state ‘protector of unborn life’

By Sarah Swetlik

After the U.S. Supreme Court’s decision striking down Roe V. Wade and Planned Parenthood v. Casey, Alabama Attorney General Steve Marshall said that state laws prohibiting abortion are now in full effect.

“The issue of abortion now returns to the States—and the State of Alabama has unequivocally elected to be a protector of unborn life,” Marshall wrote.

“Accordingly, I wish to immediately issue the following notices: ”Because neither the United States Constitution nor the Alabama Constitution provides a right to abortion, Alabama laws that prohibit abortion and that have not been enjoined by a court are in full effect. For those laws that have been halted by courts, the State will immediately file motions to dissolve those injunctions. Any abortionist or abortion clinic operating in the State of Alabama in violation of Alabama law should immediately cease and desist operations.

Two abortion providers in Alabama have already stopped performing procedures. On Friday, the U.S. Supreme Court ruled Friday that states can create laws regulating or banning the procedure, overturning nearly 50 years of precedent. The case, Dobbs vs. Jackson Women’s Health Organization, concerned a law in Mississippi that bans abortion after 15 weeks, more than a month before a fetus becomes viable.

Still, Marshall’s order does not mean that the 2019 Human Life Protection Act can take immediate effect. State officials need to petition U.S. District Judge Myron Thompson to lift his injunction, which could take time. The 2019 law makes it a felony to perform or assist in abortion but does not include criminal penalties for women receiving the procedure.

Marshall also said he intended to maintain protections for anti-abortion groups that provide resources and services.

“Furthermore, any act of vandalism or violence against any crisis pregnancy center, church, or other pro-life entity in retaliation for today’s decision will be prosecuted by the Attorney General’s Office to the fullest extent of the law.”