Idaho Supreme Court issued a decision upholding the state's near-total abortion ban

Posted at 4:07 PM, Jan 06, 2023
and last updated 2023-01-16 18:22:59-05

BOISE, Idaho — The Idaho Supreme Court issued a decision upholding the state's near-total abortion ban after Planned Parenthood and a physician challenged it.

"And finally, we have reached the day where Idaho's Supreme Court declares once and for all the state constitution does not protect the right for abortions," said Blaine Conzatti, Idaho Family Policy Center President.

In a 3-2 decision Thursday, the Idaho Supreme Court dismissed a trio of lawsuits brought by planned parenthood and an Idaho physician aimed at blocking the state's strict anti-abortion laws. Planned Parenthood claimed the laws offend constitutional principles such as equal protection and due process.

But a majority of the justices said in the ruling that the Idaho constitution does not offer a fundamental right to abortion.

As a result, current Idaho law stands, and most abortions are now illegal in the Gem State, except in cases of rape or incest that are reported to law enforcement and to prevent a pregnant woman's death. However, that burden of proof lies on the doctor.

"It is absolutely unconscionable that anyone would have to leave their home state for health care, and that is exactly what this ruling has done," said Rebecca Gibson, Planned Parenthood president.

In the State Supreme Court's majority statement, Idaho Supreme Court Justice Robyn Brody writes, "All we are deciding today is that the Idaho Constitution, as it currently stands, does not include a fundamental right to abortion."

Planned Parenthood's president says they are committed to helping pregnant Idahoans access safe, legal abortion services out of state and adds that they are not giving up on fighting for abortion rights in Idaho.

"And listen, this fight is not over. We know extreme politicians in Idaho will stop at nothing to continue to prevent access to contraception," said Rebecca Gibson.

Attempting to perform an abortion in the state of Idaho is a felony punishable by up to five years in prison. A physician does have the right to defend themselves in court by proving the abortion was necessary to prevent the pregnant person's death.