Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis signed the state's Senate Bill 300, or Heartbeat Protection Act, into law on Thursday. The legislation bans abortions at six weeks of gestation, once an unborn child has a detectable heartbeat, with exceptions.
It is a major piece of legislation that will affect a significant number of women in Florida.
The next day, at an event at Liberty University in Virginia, a major religious conservative school, DeSantis hardly mentioned the legislation.
As Politico reported, the topic of abortion was in the speech, but not highlighted like other topics. DeSantis spoke about his row with Disney and what conservatives have called a "woke ideology." The major piece of abortion legislation that he had just signed into law the day before was said to be just mentioned in passing.
The White House said in a statement that the legislation would prevent "four million Florida women of reproductive age from accessing abortion care after six weeks — before many women even know they're pregnant."
In a previous statement, DeSantis said, "We are proud to support life and family in the state of Florida. I applaud the Legislature for passing the Heartbeat Protection Act that expands pro-life protections and provides additional resources for young mothers and families."
SB300 calls for a ban on abortions after six weeks, although it is contingent on whether Florida's 15-week ban is upheld by the state's Supreme Court.
Abortion advocates have highlighted how those who menstruate often don't know they're pregnant by the six-week mark.
SB300 includes exceptions for rape, incest, and human trafficking, in addition to those already available to look after the life of the mother.
The legislation also allows for abortions "when parents are facing the heartbreaking diagnosis of a fatal fetal abnormality."
The passing of the legislation was considered to be a major political victory for the prominent Republican who has been widely considered among his party to be a strong possible contender for GOP nominee for the White House in 2024.
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