The Governor vetoed the bill at a pro-abortion rally for “Health Care Freedom” on Bicentennial Mall near the state legislative building beside leaders from Planned Parenthood and other pro-abortion groups. His veto message claims, “This bill will create dangerous interference with the doctor-patient relationship, leading to harm for pregnant women and their families. With its medically unnecessary obstacles and restrictions, it will make abortion unavailable to many women, particularly those with lower incomes, those who live in rural areas, and those who already have limited access to health care.”
At the same time, pro-life advocates held their own rally outside of the legislative building, praying and urging state lawmakers to override the Governor’s veto.
I will veto this extreme ban and need everyone’s help to hold it. – RC pic.twitter.com/5uu1iAbHhx
— Governor Roy Cooper (@NC_Governor) May 3, 2023
The NC Constitution requires three-fifths of the members of each chamber “present and voting” to vote for the override in order for a bill to become law “notwithstanding the objections of the Governor.” This means that if all members are present, 30 members of the Senate and 72 members of the House would have to vote to override.
Presently, Republicans have three-fifths supermajorities in both chambers, but just barely. The GOP holds 30 of the 50 seats in the NC Senate, and 72 of the 120 seats in the NC House, but only after Rep. Tricia Cotham (R-Mecklenburg) switched parties from Democrat to Republican a few weeks ago. Cotham, along will all the other members of the House Republican Caucus—except Rep. Ted Davis (R-New Hanover) who had an excused absence—voted in favor of SB 20. None of the House Democrats supported the bill.