South Dakota lawmaker withdraws abortion bill

February 8, 2023

PIERRE, S.D. — In emotional testimony, a state representative who has had health problems during pregnancy, lost a pregnancy to miscarriage, and is currently four months pregnant, withdrew her bill on abortion this morning (Tuesday).

It would have clarified when an abortion is allowed for the life or health of the mother.

Republican Representative Taylor Rehfeldt, sometimes near tears, said she and three other legislators who are also advanced practice nurses, were attempting to clarify the state’s “trigger” law following the U.S. Supreme Court overturning Roe v. Wade last year.

The mother of two said the bill, HB 1167, would have put back language that was on the books on the life of the mother for over 30 years.

“I never thought protecting the mother is not pro-life,” Rep. Rehfeldt said. “There are two patients–the mother and the baby. It’s the doctor’s oath to protect both.”

Rep. Rehfeld said she would be back again next session with another bill to clarify the issue.

“I trust we can work to write a law that people actually understand,” she said.

There was no further testimony, and the committee agreed 13 to 0 to table the bill.