SIOUX FALLS, S.D. (KELO) — South Dakota Governor Kristi Noem is calling for a special session with the State Legislature in response to the Supreme Court’s Dobbs v. Jackson ruling.
South Dakota has a trigger law passed in 2005 that would automatically ban abortion in the event of the Court giving states the right to decide on abortion. That means abortion is now illegal in South Dakota. except in the event that it is medically necessary to save the life of the pregnant woman.
“Every abortion always had two victims: the unborn child and the mother. Today’s decision will save unborn lives in South Dakota, but there is more work to do,” Governor Kristi Noem said in a statement. “We must do what we can to help mothers in crisis know that there are options and resources available for them. Together, we will ensure that abortion is not only illegal in South Dakota – it is unthinkable.”
The dates for the special session have not yet be decided. A later date will be chosen after legislative leaders meet.
South Dakota Right to Life Executive Director Dale Bartscher said his organization “enthusiastically applauds this decision.”
“We will continue helping women navigate pregnancies they did not plan for as we remind South Dakotan’s that the pro-life movement cares about women and their unborn children,” Bartscher said. “Our movement includes nearly 3,000 pregnancy help centers across the United States designed to provide free services for women where and when they need it, such as free ultrasounds, pregnancy tests, prenatal vitamins, baby clothing, formula, parenting classes, and additional practical and material help.”
“With the end of Roe, South Dakota can again work to have enforceable laws to protect our children,” said Senate President Pro Tempore Lee Schoenbeck (R-Watertown).
Schoenbeck said a special session is needed because there’s a new responsibility to protect lives because of the Supreme Court’s decision.
House Speaker Pro Tempore Jon Hansen said he looks forward to working with Gov. Noem and members of the legislature to defend life.