The first bill would prevent women from getting abortions after 20 weeks of pregnancy.
Twenty-six states allow abortion until up to 22 weeks, according to the Guttmacher Institute. And even in those states that restrict abortion to 20 weeks, many still allow exceptions in cases of rape or incest. However, the Kentucky bill does not.
The bill's supporters said this ban is necessary to protect fetuses, who they claim can feel pain at this stage of pregnancy. Most doctors, however, say they can't. Moreover, fewer than 2% of abortions actually occur after 21 weeks of pregnancy. Proponents of similar legislation in Ohio said the goal is not to stop that small number of abortions that occur after 20 weeks, but to move toward stopping abortion in general.
The proposal is so controversial that the bill would establish a litigation fund to counter lawsuits against the legislation. Of the 20 states that have passed 20-week abortion bans, three are currently blocked due to legal challenges.