Indiana won’t try to ban abortion during the current legislative session — but the issue could return this summer.
Both sides of the abortion debate see a pending Supreme Court case over a Mississippi law as a decision which could roll back or overturn Roe v. Wade. Salem Senator Erin Houchin (R) has introduced a bill that would trigger a special session if the court significantly rolls back abortion rights.
The Republican-controlled legislature has passed several new abortion regulations over the last decade, but House Speaker Todd Huston (R-Fishers) and Senate President Pro Tem Rod Bray (R-Martinsville) both say they’ll wait to see what the Court says before acting to restrict or ban abortion. Huston notes that ruling isn’t expected until a few months after the General Assembly adjourns in March. And Bray says when the Court does rule, it may not be a clear-cut ruling, but one which requires close analysis to determine what’s constitutional.
The General Assembly is already embroiled in a court fight with Governor Holcomb over a law passed last year, allowing the legislature to call its own special session to deal with issues related to emergency declarations. Houchin’s bill would go beyond that. Bray says he isn’t ruling out a special session to deal with the abortion ruling, rather than waiting for the start of the 2023 session in January. But he says he’d consult with Holcomb once the ruling is issued, and says if there’s a special session, it’ll be Holcomb who calls it.