Thursday’s emergency declaration issued by Iowa Gov. Kim Reynolds will ban surgical abortions until at least April 16, according to the Governor’s office.
This is at odds with Planned Parenthood’s interpretation. The Iowa Standard called Planned Parenthood on Friday to ask about abortions and the impact of the Governor’s order. Planned Parenthood said abortions would not be impacted.
After hearing Simon Conway report that Reynolds confirmed her order does prohibit surgical abortions, The Iowa Standard reached out to Iowa AG Tom Miller’s office. They sent a 15-page FAQ document. In it, it states:
“The Governor has issued several Proclamations of Disaster Emergency pursuant to Iowa Code sections 29C.6, 135.140, and 135.144, which contain a number of orders closing certain public locations. Under Iowa Code chapters 29C and 135, these orders are enforceable by peace officers and a violation of such orders is a crime: “A peace officer, when in full and distinctive uniform or displaying a badge or other insignia of authority, may arrest without warrant any person violating or attempting to violate in such officer’s presence any order or rule, made pursuant to chapter 29C. This authority shall be limited to those rules which affect the public generally.” Iowa Code section 29C.18(2). In addition, officers of homeland security and emergency management “shall execute and enforce the orders or rules made by the governor or under the governor’s authority.” Iowa Code section 29C.18(1).”
The 15-page FAQ document doesn’t list the word abortion. The Iowa Standard asked the AG’s office if they had a plan for enforcing the order or if they had an opinion on it.