Arizona's Republican-controlled House voted April 24 to repeal the state's 1864 law banning abortion recently upheld by that state's Supreme Court. Republicans in the state Senate recently allowed that chamber to proceed to a repeal vote, meaning that chamber could soon follow suit.

Should the state Senate do so the following week, Democratic Gov. Katie Hobbs is expected to sign the repeal.

"We mourn for the loss of the children who would have been protected, and the mothers who would have received life-affirming help to address their holistic needs, under Arizona's strongest pro-life law," Marjorie Dannenfelser, president of SBA Pro-Life America, said in a statement following the House action.

In contrast, Arizona Attorney General Mayes said in a statement the law "has no place in the 21st century."

"I am grateful that sanity prevailed in the Arizona House today with the repeal of the draconian, near-total 1864 abortion ban," he said, calling the Senate "to quickly follow suit and join the House in repealing this law."

Mayes said that the law could still take effect without "an emergency clause" implementing the repeal, but vowed "to look at every legal option available to prevent that from ever happening."

Republicans controlling the Arizona Legislature previously blocked repeal efforts after the state Supreme Court's ruling. But former President Donald Trump, the presumptive Republican presidential nominee, said during a campaign stop that the Arizona abortion ban "needs to be straightened out."

"I'm sure that the governor and everybody else will bring it back into reason and that will be taken care of," he said.

Arizona Republican Senate candidate Kari Lake -- who described abortion as "execution" during her failed 2022 gubernatorial run -- likewise took Trump's position and expressed her opposition to the ban.

But of the two Arizona abortion laws on the books, the 1864 law offered the most complete protection of unborn children. According to U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention data from 2020, 93.1% of abortions were performed at less than 13 weeks' gestation, meaning Arizona's remaining 15-week ban would have a very limited impact on the occurrence of legal abortion.

The Arizona Supreme Court ruled April 9 that the Civil War-era near-total abortion ban is enforceable following the U.S. Supreme Court's 2022 reversal of the 1973 Roe v. Wade decision and related abortion precedents with the Dobbs v. Jackson Women's Health Organization decision, in the absence of a legal mechanism blocking its enforcement. Not only is that law enforceable, that court found, but it rendered moot the state's 15-week abortion ban that went into effect after Dobbs.

But the high court also paused its ruling in order to send the case back to a lower state court to hear additional arguments.

However, Arizona may have the issue of abortion on its ballot in November, which could undo abortion restrictions in the state.

In her statement, Dannenfelser seemed resigned to the prospect of the abortion ban's repeal in the Legislature, while gearing up for a fight to save the 15-week ban.

"After months of confusion, the people of Arizona will soon have clarity on the state's abortion laws: a 15-week protection for the unborn who can feel excruciating pain, with exceptions for life of the mother, rape, and incest," Dannenfelser said, in contrast to abortion activists whose "goal is to repeal Arizona's 15-week abortion law and replace it with a constitutional amendment that would allow unlimited painful late-term abortions in the fifth, sixth, seventh month of pregnancy and beyond."

Dannenfelser said Lake "and all GOP candidates and elected officials must bring clarity to Arizona voters by campaigning vigorously in support of Arizona's 15-week protection with exceptions and in opposition to the extreme no-limits abortion amendment."

In a joint statement regarding the April 9 ruling, the bishops of the Arizona Catholic Conference voiced their opposition to the upcoming ballot measure.

"This initiative, among other things, would likely remove most safeguards for girls and women that are currently in place at abortion clinics, permit a minor to obtain an abortion without parental involvement or permission, and allow for painful late-term abortions of viable preborn children," the bishops stated. "We do not believe that this extreme initiative is what Arizona wants or needs, and we continue to pray that it does not succeed."