The bishops’ statement included the names of Thomas Olmsted and Eduardo Nevares of Phoenix, James Wall of Gallup, Edward Weisenburger of Tucson, and John Pazak of the Ruthenian Eparchy of Phoenix.
“[I]t is recognized by the abortion industry that women seeking abortions do so because of stressful circumstances, financial pressure, and relationship discord. This is a tragedy, and it is the reason why we continue to advocate for solutions to these problems other than the taking of an innocent life through abortion,” the bishops concluded.
The measure is not currently enforceable because of the U.S. Supreme Court’s ruling in Roe v. Wade, but could be allowed to come into effect depending on the outcome of Dobbs v. Jackson Women’s Health Organization, in which the Supreme Court is considering a 15 week ban in Mississippi.
The 15 week ban is one of at least two pro-life measures in Arizona that is currently unenforceable, the other of which is a total ban on abortion which is over a century old.
Arizona has passed several pro-life measures since 2009, including a provision that minors must have notarized consent from one parent to obtain an abortion. The state also in 2011 passed a ban on abortions based on the race or sex of the unborn child or based on the race of a parent. Arizona also has a 24-hour waiting period for women seeking abortions, laws that bar non-physicians from carrying out abortions, and laws against telemedicine abortions.
And in 2015, the Arizona legislature passed a law barring abortion coverage from all health plans offered through the state's health insurance exchange.