The Arkansas legislature has overridden the governor's veto of legislation that bans abortion after 12-weeks of pregnancy.


The Arkansas House on Wednesday voted 56-33 to override the veto of the most restrictive anti-abortion proposal in the nation. The state Senate voted to override the veto on Tuesday.

“We are deeply disappointed that the Arkansas legislature voted to impose the most restrictive ban on safe and legal abortion in the country," Cecile Richards of Planned Parenthood said in a statement. "The majority of Arkansans — and the majority of Americans — don’t want politicians involved in a woman’s personal medical decisions about her pregnancy. Governor Beebe rightfully vetoed this legislation and the legislature would have been wise to let the veto stand as this bill is clearly unconstitutional."

Arkansas Gov. Mike Beebe vetoed the legislation on Monday. The Democratic governor said the proposed law contradicted the Supreme Court's Roe v. Wade ruling and was therefore unconstitutional.

“When I was sworn in as Governor I took an oath to preserve, protect, and defend both the Arkansas Constitution and the Constitution of the United States. I take that oath seriously,” Beebe said.

State Sen. Jason Rapert (R), the sponsor of the Arkansas Human Heartbeat Protection Act, said Tuesday that the bill was constitutional "because the Arkansas Constitution says that we will protect life in Arkansas from the moment of conception."

The American Civil Liberties Union has vowed to challenge the law in court.