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Leaders, organizations react to SC Supreme Court abortion law ruling

McMaster was one of a handful of state officials who have issued statements after the State Supreme Court ruled the 'Fetal Heartbeat Law' unconstitutional.

COLUMBIA, S.C. — Some of South Carolina's most powerful elected officials are voicing their opinions after the State Supreme Court ruled a major abortion law unconstitutional.

Governor Henry McMaster released a statement on Thursday vowing to work with the general assembly to "correct the error" made by the state's highest court.

"Our State Supreme Court has found a right in our Constitution which was never intended by the people of South Carolina," McMaster said. "With this opinion, the Court has clearly exceeded its authority."

Attorney General Alan Wilson also released a statement suggesting that his office "respectfully, but strongly" disagrees with the court's ruling and will be working with McMaster and the legislature "to review all our available options moving forward."

Those reactions follow Thursday's decision by the court that found that the state's law, which banned abortions after a heartbeat could be detected, outside of cases of rape or incest, violated state constitutional rights to privacy.

The ruling stated that "the State unquestionably has the authority to limit the right of privacy that protects women from state interference with her decision, but any such limitation must be reasonable and it must be meaningful in that the time frames imposed must afford a woman sufficient time to determine she is pregnant and take reasonable steps to terminate that pregnancy."

The ruling found that the six weeks of the "Fetal Heartbeat" law was not enough time.

Since the ruling was announced, various organizations at the local and national level have also released statements both for and against the move.

At the national level, White House Press Secretary Karine Jean-Pierre called the state's abortion laws "extreme and dangerous" and the State Supreme Court's ruling "encouraging."

"Women should be able to make their own decisions," Jean Pierre said.

The CEO for the Center for Reproductive Rights, Nancy Northup, called the move an "immense victory for South Carolinians and the entire region."

"We know that lawmakers will double down on their relentless efforts to restrict essential health care, but we will continue to use every tool at our disposal to restore abortion access across the country once and for all,” Northup added.

On the state level, meanwhile, South Carolina Republican Party Chair Drew McKissick announced his disappointment in the State Supreme Court ruling, calling it an "unfortunate example of judicial activism."

"The decision goes against the will of the voters in South Carolina and is yet another reminder of the critical need to reform the judicial selection and election process," McKissick said in the party's official statement.

On the other side of the isle, the Democratic Party also released a statement calling the decision a "voice of sanity."

"The right to privacy is paramount to the health of all South Carolinians," South Carolina Democratic Party Chair Trav Robertson Jr. continued.

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