Any woman who had an appointment with Planned Parenthood in St Louis Missouri to have an abortion today will have to wait. A law went into effect yesterday in the state of Missouri that caused them to halt all abortion procedures.
Some supporters say the intent of the bill is to ban only a certain late term abortion procedure but that's not how Planned Parenthood and the governor of that state see it.
Anti-abortionists called it a great day for the unborn.
Missouri governor Mel Carnahan had a different view.
More than two-thirds of Missouri lawmakers voted to overturn the governor's veto of a bill designed to ban a late term abortion procedure called partial birth abortion. There's never been a documented case of a doctor using the procedure in Missouri.
Governor Carnahan vetoed the bill because he says it bans all abortions and he says he fears the bill gives a legal defense to extremists who commit acts of violence against abortion providers and patients.
Planned Parenthood, a family planning clinic that offers abortion services, halted all abortions as soon as senators voted to override the veto yesterday/Thursday.
Representative Bill Luetkenhaus of the St Louis area sponsored the legislation that has now become law.
He says he questions what the clinic's practices are if they're halting abortions because of the override vote.
So for now, many doctors in the state aren't doing any abortion procedures. They're waiting for an injunction to keep the law from being enforced. Planned Parenthood has requested an injunction and filed a lawsuit in U-S District Court in Kansas City challenging the constitutionality of the law. Similar laws have been struck down in 20 other states. In some of the cases, the law didn't have a section allowing the procedure to be performed in emergency situations where the woman's health would be at risk...the Missouri law doesn't have that exception either.
Opponents of the bill say this is an attempt by the Missouri Catholic Conference to challenge Roe v. Wade. Louis De Feo, the lobbyist for the group helped author the bill.
Senator Ken Jacob who led the governor's charge against the bill says he's all too familiar with De Feo's influence.
Governor Carnahan says he and his staff will be looking at what steps they can take now that the veto has been overturned.