Communications Department

South Carolina Governor Henry McMaster Signs Fetal Heartbeat and Protection from Abortion Act

May 25, 2023 | 2023 Press Releases, Press Releases, Press Room

WASHINGTON – Today, pro-life Governor Henry McMaster signed South Carolina’s Fetal Heartbeat and Protection from Abortion Act.

“We thank and praise pro-life Governor McMaster for signing the Fetal Heartbeat and Protection from Abortion Act,” said Carol Tobias, president of National Right to Life. “South Carolina’s new law will save hundreds of lives each month. We also praise our South Carolina affiliate, South Carolina Citizens for Life, for their hard work and diligence in seeing this bill pass and become law.”

On Tuesday, by a vote of 27-19, the South Carolina Senate approved the Fetal Heartbeat and Protection from Abortion Act (S474). Tuesday’s vote was the final legislative action needed to protect unborn children in South Carolina when the fetal heartbeat can be detected. On May 16, the South Carolina House passed the law by a vote of 82-33.

“We applaud Governor Henry McMaster, a long-time pro-life supporter for signing into law the Fetal Heartbeat and Protection from Abortion Act,” said Lisa Van Riper, president of South Carolina Citizens for Life. “This act not only protects unborn children with a detectable heartbeat from abortion on demand, but also signals that the child in the womb is a welcome member of our society.”

Representative John McCravy (R-Greenwood), Chairman of the House Family Caucus, said it is anticipated that the abortion industry will file an immediate legal challenge to the new law.

According to the South Carolina State Department of Health and Environmental Control, there are approximately 1,000 abortions per month—largely due to out-of-state abortion traffic. Enactment of the Fetal Heartbeat and Protection from Abortion Act is expected to reduce the number of abortions occurring in South Carolina to 200-250 per month.

Founded in 1968, the National Right to Life Committee (NRLC), the federation of affiliates in each of the 50 states and the District of Columbia and more than 3,000 local chapters, is the nation’s oldest and largest grassroots pro-life organization. Recognized as the flagship of the pro-life movement, National Right to Life works through legislation and education to protect innocent human life from abortion, infanticide, assisted suicide and euthanasia.