An incredible piece of pro-life legislation has just been introduced in the Florida legislature with the express intent of protecting the life of unborn babies.
Republican state Rep. Mike Hill filed a “fetal heartbeat” bill on Thursday that would require doctors to perform an ultrasound prior to performing an abortion procedure, and would criminalize that potential abortion if a heartbeat was detected from the unborn baby, News Service of Florida reported.
Should the bill pass the Florida legislature and be signed into law by Republican Gov. Ron DeSantis, it would become a third-degree felony for any “person who knowingly or purposefully performs or induces an abortion on a pregnant woman with the specific intent of causing or abetting the termination of the life of the unborn human being whose fetal heartbeat has been detected.”
Known as HB 235, the bill also makes a number of other significant changes to the state’s abortion laws, such as striking out virtually all references to a “fetus” while replacing that term with the phrase “unborn human being,” which is defined as “an individual organism of the species Homo sapiens from fertilization until live birth.”
The bill would require that, no less than 24 hours prior to the performance or inducement of an abortion, the doctor be required to perform an ultrasound in search of a fetal heartbeat. The doctor would then be required to provide the mother with the information obtained and review it with her. Should the mother refuse that option, she would be required to do so in writing while making clear the choice was of her own free will and not from undue influence.
The bill does include certain exceptions to the felony criminalization of an abortion after a heartbeat is detected, such as for cases of domestic violence, incest, rape, human trafficking or the severe risks to the health and life of the mother.
Predictably, the pro-abortion crowd is outraged by the filing of this bill, and will undoubtedly try to stop what they are calling the “most extreme” anti-abortion bill ever in both the legislature and the courts, according to Florida’s Daily Commercial.
“This is the most extreme bill that has been presented anywhere in the U.S.” She added, “It’s clearly unconstitutional in every way and it is a blatant attempt to end access to abortion care for Florida women,” said Reproductive Rights Director for Progress Florida, Amy Weintraub.
Though this is the first abortion-related bill filed for the 2019 legislative session, it comes on the heels of a number of pro-life bills that had been passed in recent years and signed into law by former Gov. Rick Scott. The pro-abortion crowd is worried that the same trend will continue with DeSantis in office, given his open pro-life stance.
Laura Goodhue, executive director of the Florida Alliance of Planned Parenthood, said, “We know that in Florida the state legislature is constantly launching attacks to reproductive health care.”
“The Florida Supreme Court has been a backstop,” she added.
Unfortunately for those relying on the courts to back up their pro-abortion stance, times and court balances have changed, and DeSantis has already filled two of three vacancies on that court with conservative constitutionalist judges.
“Women’s right to abortion care have long been protected by the Florida Constitution and Supreme Court and we definitely are concerned that those things in jeopardy as the makeup of the court shifts to the right,” Weintraub said.
Furthermore, the shift to the right of the courts has not been confined solely to Florida, but is occurring at the federal and national level as well, as President Donald Trump has appointed dozens of conservative jurists to fill various vacancies at the district and appeals court levels, as well as the U.S. Supreme Court.
For his part, Rep. Hill told the Daily Commercial that the pro-life bill is “not an attempt to tell a woman what she can or cannot do with her body. The whole purpose is to protect the life of the unborn.”
As to allegations that his bill was just a step toward ending abortions altogether, Hill said, “Challenging Roe v. Wade would stop abortions altogether. My bill doesn’t do that.”
This is an incredible pro-life bill that centers in on protecting the life of unborn babies once a heartbeat is detected — which can be detectable anywhere from six to 12 weeks after conception — and hits right at the heart of a primary pro-abortion argument, which claims that abortion is not the ending of an unborn life, but merely a procedure to remove a lifeless clump of cells.
This bill, if passed into law, would directly undermine that fallacious argument and reveal abortion to be the murderous life-ending, heartbeat-stopping procedure we’ve long known it to be.
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