The state's decade long 20-week abortion ban was replaced this week with a 12-week ban.

The new restriction is staunchly backed by Republican Gov. Jim Pillen, who was asked by NCN if doctors who perform abortions after 12 weeks will be criminally prosecuted.

[View our full interview above]

NCN’s Joe Jordan: Governor on the new 12-week abortion ban, can you guarantee that doctors who perform those so-called “contested abortions” will not be criminally prosecuted?  

Gov. Jim Pillen: Yea, yea again you know it's the far left trying to create nothing but fear in the conversation. We’ve had a 10- year bill at 20 weeks and there's never one case. So, this bill is just about saving babies that are 12 weeks of age and more, has nothing to do with patient-doctor relationships. It’s just saving as many babies living in moms' wombs.  

NCN: Well, if no one's going to be criminally prosecuted how does that prevent abortions from occurring?  

Gov. Pillen: Twelve weeks. So, there's got to be patient-doctor relationship if abortion takes place so again when that's going to be the doctor's privilege to make that decision with the mother. 

NCN: So, could that doctor be criminally prosecuted if he violates whatever that rule is.  

Gov. Pillen: Again, it's been in law for 10 years and there's never been a case.  

NCN: I still don't understand. If no one's going to be criminally prosecuted why does 12 weeks make a difference?  

Gov. Pillen: Because people, because women will not be able to get an abortion after 12 weeks.  

NCN: What if they do?  

Gov. Pillen: Well if there's an abortion clinic that'll be a problem, right.  

NCN: So, there would be some criminal prosecution, potentially.  

Gov. Pillen: If the doctor performing abortions, if a doctor makes the decision that it's in the best interest of the mother to lose the baby that's the patient-doctor relationship.