POSTED: Thursday, March 7, 2013 - 1:00pm
UPDATED: Thursday, March 7, 2013 - 1:04pm
NBC NATIONAL NEWS — The Arkansas House of Representatives voted Wednesday to override a veto on a 12-week abortion ban law, setting up the most restrictive abortion legislation in the nation.
The House voted 56-33 to override the veto of Governor Mike Beebe. All 51 Republicans voted in favor and were joined by five Democrats.
Bill sponsor Senator Jason Rapert (R-Bigelow) says the override sends a message that Arkansas will protect life.
"The eyes of the nation have been watching Arkansas and the eyes of the nation can see we are on the side of life," Rapert said after the override.
The American Civil Liberties Union says a legal challenge will be filed in federal court. ACLU Arkansas spokesperson Rita Sklar says the law is unconstitutional and is a step backwards for civil and women's rights.
"I think it sends the message that Arkansas is going back to the stone age," Sklar says. "This will be the first bill litigated."
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