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The Michigan House passes a repeal of the state's abortion ban

A woman holds a pink sign with white lettering that says "bans off our bodies." She stands in a crowd of mostly women.
Paul Sancya/AP
Abortion-rights protesters at a rally following the United States Supreme Court's decision to overturn Roe v. Wade, outside the state capitol in Lansing, Friday, June 24, 2022. The Supreme Court ended constitutional protections for abortion that had been in place nearly 50 years, a decision by its conservative majority to overturn the court's landmark abortion cases. (AP Photo/Paul Sancya)

The law is unenforceable because of a reproductive rights constitutional amendment voters approved in November.

(MPRN) Michigan House lawmakers sent a repeal of the state’s inactive 1931 abortion ban to the Senate Thursday.

Supporters say the out-of-date law still needs to go despite the passage of a state constitutional amendment guaranteeing the right to abortion.

Democratic state Representative Laurie Pohutsky sponsored the legislation. She said lawmakers should have taken it off the books years ago before the US Supreme Court overturned Roe v. Wade.

"Everyone serving in this chamber was sent here with a clear task after last November, and I am grateful that we are finally, finally addressing it and repealing this archaic and punitive law once and for all," she said.

Opponents to the repeal argue the law still provides protections to women who face botched abortions. Republican Representative Rachelle Smit said a provision that allows prosecution of doctors if a patient dies during a procedure would also be repealed under the House bill.

"It is unconscionable to remove the criminal penalties for literally killing women in abortions," she said. "How does this protect women’s health?"

But Democrats say that's fearmongering. They say other laws and policies already address those concerns.

The Senate could pass its own abortion ban repeal as soon as next week.