Iowa Supreme Court reverses decision recognizing a fundamental right to abortion

There was good news from the Iowa Supreme Court last Friday. The court overruled its 2018 decision that recognized a fundamental right to abortion in the Iowa Constitution.

The court said, “Although we overrule PPH II, and thus reject the proposition that there is a fundamental right to an abortion in Iowa’s Constitution subjecting abortion regulation to strict scrutiny, we do not at this time decide what constitutional standard should replace it.”

Therefore, the proposed Protect Life Amendment to clarify that the state constitution does not recognize a right to an abortion is still needed.

As a result of the opinion, the court sent a 2020 law requiring a 24-hour waiting period before an abortion back to a lower court for further proceedings.

The “Dobbs” decision on Mississippi’s 15-week abortion ban from the U.S. Supreme Court should be coming soon as well.


Also last week, Iowans for Responsible Gun Ownership announced a campaign to defeat a proposed amendment to Iowa’s Constitution that will be on the ballot this November. The amendment would add a “strict scrutiny” standard to any regulation of the right to keep and bear arms, making it a fundamental right. It would virtually eliminate the ability of the state legislature to regulate this right.

“The right to bear arms as found in our Constitution must be balanced against the safety and well-being of the populace as a whole,” the Iowa bishops said. The bishops advise a “no” vote this fall.

For more information, including an informational flier, go to the Iowans for Responsible Gun Laws website at


Gov. Reynolds has signed several provisions into law supported by the Iowa Catholic Conference, including HF 2578, which includes $500,000 for the Iowa MOMS bill for maternal support, an extension of the newborn Safe Haven law in HF 2420, and SF 522 creating criminal penalties for elder abuse.

Bills opposed by the ICC were also signed into law, including HF 2355, cutting back on the maximum number of weeks of unemployment benefits, and HF 2497, legalizing “cashless gambling,” which makes it possible to transfer money from your bank account to a phone app to the slot machine.


The United States Conference of Catholic Bishops have issued several action alerts, including asking Congress to provide for a permanent solution for DREAMERs and urging action on gun violence. You can find them at


Today is the second federal commemoration of the Juneteenth holiday, which marks the end of legalized slavery in the United States after the Civil War.


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