On February 29, 2016 the West Virginia House of Delegates passed the Unborn Child Protection from Dismemberment Abortion Act (S.B. 10).
The House vote was 86-13 following the state Senate vote of 24-9 on February 17 to pass the bill, sending the bill to Democratic Gov. Earl Ray Tomblin for approval.
Under this bill, dismemberment, or “dilation and evacuation” (D&E) abortions, would be prohibited, eliminating the procedure that takes babies from the womb limb by limb.
In this procedure, the fetus dies by bleeding to death. Approximately 95 percent of all second trimester abortions follow this procedure, a procedure “itself laden with the power to devalue human life” according to U.S. Supreme Court Justice Anthony Kennedy in his 2007 ruling of Gonzales v. Carhart.
Likewise, Idaho, Missouri, Minnesota, and Nebraska have introduced bans, and the pro-abortion Center for Reproductive Rights expects that Kentucky, Michigan, New Hampshire, New Jersey, Rhode Island, and South Carolina will file more.
In Kansas and Oklahoma, bans on dismemberment abortions have already been democratically enacted, but both states have had difficulty enforcing them with opposition from judges in both cases.
Governor Tomblin has not yet announced his position formally, but it is speculated that he will veto the bill as he has vetoed abortion restrictions in the past, such as the Pain-Capable Unborn Child Protection Act which the state legislature passed after overriding the governor last March.