North Carolina Attorney General Josh Stein has decided he will not ask a lower court to lift its ruling blocking enforcement of the state's ban on abortions after 20 weeks.
Live Action reports that after being in place for decades, the ban was overturned in 2019 following lawsuits from abortion providers. But the Supreme Court's recent overturn of Roe v. Wade meant there was a good chance that the state court would dismiss the lawsuits and allow the law to stand. Stein, however, is unwilling to ask the court to reconsider its injunction.
"Unfortunately, he's taken a political position on this when it's his duty to enforce the laws and protect the laws of our state, but he's refusing to do that," responds John Rustin of the North Carolina Family Policy Council. "Fortunately, our legislative leaders, as I understand it, are going to pursue petitioning the court to reverse this ruling that struck down our 20-week ban and at the very least get that reinstated."
He tells AFN that is only the first step.
"[We'll] work very hard leading into this fall's election to get a pro-life majority in the state General Assembly so that our legislators can come back in January and enact a law that will protect life in North Carolina and keep North Carolina from being an abortion destination for women seeking abortion in the Southeast."
That includes a possible heartbeat bill or a complete ban on abortion.
Though rare, abortions after 20 weeks have occurred in the state since the restriction was rescinded three years ago. According to 2020 state statistics, roughly 48 preborn children were killed after 20 weeks that year. Most second-trimester abortions committed around the 20-week mark are surgical D&E abortions, in which the preborn child is torn apart limb by limb.
Meanwhile, polling has consistently shown Americans support restrictions on abortion especially in the second and third trimester, leaving Live Action to conclude that Stein's refusal to uphold North Carolina's law reflects the extreme lengths abortion advocates are now gunning for — the legal killing of preborn children up until birth.