(The Hill) – Republican Idaho Gov. Brad Little on Wednesday signed into law a new bill making it a crime for an adult to help a minor obtain an abortion or abortion pills out-of-state without parental permission.
Little signed Idaho House Bill 242, which criminalizes what it calls “abortion trafficking.” Under the new law, adults who obtain abortion pills for a pregnant minor or who help transport a pregnant minor for abortion procedures across state lines could face up to five years in prison if convicted, according to the bill text.
“Yet again, Idaho’s governor disregarded constituents and signed HB 242 into law, creating the nation’s first crime of so-called ‘abortion trafficking,'” Planned Parenthood Alliance Advocates said in response to Gov. Little’s actions on Twitter. “This legislation is despicable, and we’re going to do everything in our power to stop it.”
Little signed the bill the same day the American Civil Liberties Union and Planned Parenthood both announced they’re suing the state’s attorney general over a legal opinion interpreting state law as prohibiting medical providers from referring a patient across state lines for abortion care.
Idaho shares a border with several states where abortion is legal, including Washington, Oregon, Montana and California.
Washington Gov. Jay Inslee (D) earlier this week wrote to Little to urge a veto of the bill, per a copy of the letter shared by local outlet KREM2.
“Among the harmful impacts that this legislation will have, particularly when combined with Idaho’s recently passed abortion bans, are the exodus of some healthcare professionals from your state as well as the certain resulting increased mortality rate of Idahoan women and girls,” Inslee wrote.
He also expressed concern for Washington women and girls who could be “in grave danger if they travel to your state and find themselves in need of urgent reproductive health care services.”
Earlier this year, Oregon’s Justice Department launched a legal helpline to aid people in accessing abortion care in the state. The Oregon Attorney General called the helpline “especially important because we share a border with Idaho, which has a near-total abortion ban.”
Idaho’s abortion laws are some of the most restrictive nationwide.