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Abortion Laws Reflect Nation’s Divisions – Analysis

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There is a wave of new state abortion laws being introduced, or already passed, that reflect how divided the nation is on the subject. Most are quite restrictive but some are quite liberal.

Three abortion bills recently passed legislative committees in Texas, and have been sent to the full Senate. On March 27, a Senate panel passed a bill that would ensure protection for a child born alive following a botched abortion. Another bill is aimed at denying state and local funding of abortions. The third bill clarifies an existing statute on providing information to a woman contemplating an abortion.

Illinois went the other way. One proposed bill is an open-ended license to terminate all pregnancies right up until birth; there are zero restrictions. The other bill being considered would repeal a law requiring parental consent before a minor can abort her child. In other words, state lawmakers are weighing whether to allow children to authorize the killing of their children without their parents knowing anything about it.

The Illinois Catholic Conference opposes both bills and Chicago Archbishop Blase Cupich has denounced them in harsh terms. Mary Beth Miller, nurse director at St. John’s in Springfield, said, “The youngest baby in our hospital…was delivered at just 22 weeks and six days gestation….I am stunned at how the proposed legislation…flatly states that an embryo or fetus has no independent rights.”

Illinois has not only become abortion crazy, legislators there are considering a bill that would force all private health insurance plans to cover abortion, making no exemption for religious organizations.

If they were to get their way, a requirement mandating Catholic hospitals to perform abortions would clearly be contested in the courts, with little likelihood that the U.S. Supreme Court would affirm such a drastic assault on the First Amendment. But it proves just how maniacal some are in the pro-abortion community.

Last week, a federal judge declared a North Carolina law banning abortion after 20 weeks, in most instances, to be unconstitutional. Yet in Utah, a bill was signed into law last week that bans abortions after 18 weeks.

In Ohio, Planned Parenthood and other abortion providers were put on notice that the state may no longer pay for elective abortions. Also in Ohio, a bill passed the Senate requiring women who have an abortion to choose either burial or cremation for the remains of their babies; the bill now goes to the House.

Protection for babies with Down syndrome may be underway in Pennsylvania as lawmakers consider a bill that would restrict abortions based solely on a diagnosis that there is a possibility that the baby carries this condition.

Mississippi and Kentucky recently outlawed most abortions once a fetal heartbeat can be detected, which is about 6 weeks into pregnancy. A similar bill passed the Georgia senate; the House will now take up this measure.

The bill in Georgia sparked a strong reaction from Hollywood celebrities who are active in the pro-abortion camp. The Writers Guild of America threatened to boycott the state if the “heartbeat” bill becomes law.

Ashley Bratcher, who lives in Georgia, and who stars in “Unplanned,” the movie based on Abby Johnson’s workplace experience at a Planned Parenthood clinic, responded to Alyssa Milano’s support for Hollywood retaliation against Georgia. Bratcher told Milano “you’re forgetting about the right of women within the womb. If feminism is all about equal rights, then where are her rights?”

Bratcher got personal. “I can’t help but think how you would feel in my shoes. Having just learned months ago that my life was spared on an abortion table, it definitely put a few things in perspective for me. You had the privilege of being born in 1972. My generation was not so lucky. Over 61 million lives never reached their full potential.”

While the nation is divided on abortion, the good news is that pro-life lawmakers are moving ahead faster than their abortion-happy colleagues.

Moreover, they don’t have to run from controversy the way New York Governor Andrew Cuomo has to. He championed a law this year that allows for selective infanticide, denying human rights to babies born as a result of a botched abortion.

The sonogram allows everyone to see the undeniable, and the pictures don’t lie. Technology allowed for sanitized abortions; it may yet allow for its legal death.

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William Donohue

William Donohue is the current president of the Catholic League for Religious and Civil Rights in the United States, and has held that position since 1993.

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