Lawmakers in Alabama have approved legislation to ban abortion in almost all cases, including rape and incest.
It passed through the state senate yesterday, and will now go to the state's Republican governor.
If enacted, Alabama would become the US state with the strictest abortion laws.
The New York Times reports doctors who perform abortions could be charged with felonies and face up to 99 years in prison under the new rules.
There is an exception in the legislation for cases where there is a 'serious risk' to the mother's health.
Women would not be held criminally culpable for receiving an abortion.
Governor Kay Ivey has not indicated whether she will sign the bill into law, but she is considered an opponent of abortion.
Democrats - who hold just eight seats in the 35 member, Republican-controlled senate - criticised the proposed ban.
Senator Linda Coleman Madison said: "We want the government out of our life - we want them out of our business, we want them out of our bedroom.
"Now you're in my womb. I want you out - you don't control this, you don't own this."
A number of Democratic presidential hopefuls were also quick to speak out against the Alabama senate's decision.
Elizabeth Warren called it "dangerous and exceptionally cruel", while Kamala Harris described it as "outrageous news".
This ban is dangerous and exceptionally cruel—and the bill’s authors want to use it to overturn Roe v. Wade. I've lived in that America and let me tell you: We are not going back—not now, not ever. We will fight this. And we will win. https://t.co/WNlr7Ys73q
— Elizabeth Warren (@ewarren) May 15, 2019
Pro-life activists hope any court challenge to the bill will ultimately lead to a fresh battle over a landmark 1973 US Supreme Court ruling - Roe v Wade - that legalised abortion in the US.
The recent appointments of two conservative judges to the country's highest court by the Trump administration have renewed anti-abortion campaigners' hopes that the landmark ruling could be challenged.
However, pro-choice groups swiftly vowed that they'd take action against the Alabama laws.
The American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU) said: "Abortion is NOT a crime — it's a constitutional right. We will sue to stop this law from ever taking effect."
The latest developments in Alabama come amid rising tensions in several US states over abortion laws.
Georgia has recently introduced legislation - due to come into effect from January - effectively banning abortions once a fetal heartbeat is detected.
That can happen as soon as six weeks into a pregnancy, before many women know they're pregnant.
That legislation has prompted calls from prominent filmmakers, led by actress Alyssa Milano, to boycott the state amid its thriving film and TV production industry.