Idaho Law on Self Induced Abortion Blocked, Fetal Pain Ban Not


Jennie McCormack, the Idaho mother of three who was arrested for inducing her own abortion late in 2010, has won her case to have the longstanding state law that makes ending your own pregnancy a felony blocked.  However, her attempt to also block the new law that bans abortions after 20 weeks was unsuccessful, as the court ruled that she did not have the legal standing necessary to challenge it.

McCormack was jailed for feticide after purchasing drugs on the internet that would cause her to have a miscarriage, after deciding she could not afford a child or to see a doctor to have the pregnancy terminated.  McCormack, who believed she was about three months pregnant, instead miscarried a fetus approximately five months gestation.  After a sister of a friend reported her to the police for illegal abortion, McCormack was changed with a felony, but eventually not prosecuted due to lack of evidence.

The law against ending your own pregnancy in Idaho is being argued as unconstitutional, as it can technically make any use of abortion pills illegal, even those provided by legitimate medical professionals, making abortion especially expensive and nearly inaccessible for many women in more remote corners of the state.  Although McCormack also aborted after the 20 week deadline for having an abortion in the state, that law was not yet in effect when she aborted, which is why she was found not to have standing to challenge it.

McCormack’s lawyer has said that they will attempt to reestablish standing and challenge the fetal pain law again.  It is the first challenge of the 20 week ban in the country, despite multiple states passing nearly identical bans in the last year.


Related Stories:

Breaking: Idaho Woman Challenging “Fetal Pain” Ban

Case Dismissed Against Women Accused of “Unlawful Abortion”

Idaho Woman Charged For “Unlawful Abortion,” Turned In By Anti-Choice Advocate

Photo credit: wikimedia commons


Rosemary Graf
Rosemary Graf6 years ago

This country was suppose to be in a better, modern times. However, we are punishing women who want to control their bodies. Let's get all the states to realize women are equals to men & must have power over their bodies.

Gary A L.
Gary L6 years ago

Gary in the 1930s women didn’t have abortion in the way we do it now. They didn’t pay for it they just poisoned themselves or delivered in an alley and left it out to die....most commonly known among prostitutes to do this
Erth G you are absolutely wrong at 24 I hardly think you have any experience with life in the 30s or earlier if you had money getting an abortion was easy if not you wind up in a back alley and it wasn't just prostitutes either it was a lot of women who didn't have any means to pay so please until you walk a mile in some ones shoes don't judge

Veronica F.
Veronica F6 years ago

Well, if the mental giants of the Idaho legislature sees fit to charge a woman with feticide and want to keep this unconstitutional law on their books, I recommend they draft legislation - STAT - concerning vasectomcide and criminally charge men who have vasectomies.

What's good for the goose is good for the gander, right? Or are these people ... dare I say ... hypocrites?

Kimberlee W.
Kimberlee W6 years ago

Yeah, good luck! I knew at a very early age that I would never want kids and spent many yrs. trying to find an MD who would sterilize me. No Dice! I tried right up till my 41st b-day and then just figured if I got preggers at that age, it would more or less be a miracle.

At 53, still no kids, TG!

Diana S.
Diana P6 years ago

I swear, sometimes I wish I could just walk into a doctor's office and ask for a hysterectomy. And I'm only 27. I just can't stand the thought of living in a country in which my own body can be used against me.

Tony C.
Tony C6 years ago

A class in RESPECT AND RESPONSIBILITY should be taught from Grade one to graduation, children should be taught that anything is permissible as long as it does not hurt themselves or anybody else. Common sense would dictate that if children are taught at a very early age that every child has their own strengths and weaknesses and that they should use their strengths to help not tease or bully others.
Later on Sex Education should be taught from Contraceptives, Masturbation,LGBT and all forms of sex. Let us face it whether we like it or not children are curious and are having sex earlier and earlier. They should be taught the joys and the consequences of having sex ( Pregnancy,STD, AIDS ) But you say when will this be taught. Cut out Geography or History early on then put it back in and remove Geometry and Algebra. They can learn this in college if need be. I believe this is a solution. Nipping it in the Bud so that Bullying, Sexual Assault, and many others will be greatly diminished if not eradicated. It is my belief that when children graduate with these principals where they are taught RESPECT for themselves and others and to take RESPONSIBILITY for their actions. Within a few generations this world would be a much better place to live in.

Winn Adams
Winn A6 years ago

Idaho is still in the dark ages.

Lin Penrose
Lin Penrose6 years ago

These are people who kill innocent 'other' animals who are simply trying to survive in a world now overpopulated with humans! They feel 'pain' of a fetus? The only pain they feel is a loss of control, politics, and money in bank accounts.

Marsha S.
Grover Syck6 years ago

If it is not you body, it is none of your business.

Marsha S.
Grover Syck6 years ago

If it is not your body, it is none of your business.

End of discussion.