https://www.nytimes.com/2019/05/09/health/state-abortion-laws.html https://abcnews.go.com/US/georgia-governor-signs-week-abortion-ban-law-outcry/story?id=62874407 What would these laws do? These so-called “heartbeat” laws ban abortion after the point when a fetal heartbeat can be detected. This often occurs as early as six weeks into a pregnancy, when an ultrasound may be able to detect the pulsing of what will become the fetus’s heart. These laws therefore move the ban on abortion in those states more than four months earlier than the current constitutional standard. Doctors measure the start of pregnancy from the date of a woman’s last menstrual period, which is usually about two weeks before a fetus is conceived. (That timing is used because it’s generally impossible to know the exact moment of conception.) So these new laws would essentially prohibit abortion when an embryo is four weeks into development. That — usually just two weeks after a missed period — is before many women realize they are pregnant. The Georgia law makes exceptions, allowing later terminations of pregnancies resulting from rape or incest, something not included in every version of these laws. Most of the laws allow abortion if the woman’s life or health is seriously threatened.