Pro-Life State Legislative Update

By Dave Andrusko

Alabama Gov. Robert Bentley

Pro-lifers in Alabama are cheering news that Gov. Robert Bentley today signed the Pain-Capable Unborn Child Protection Act. The bill had passed the legislature just minutes before the legislative session ended (www.nationalrighttolifenews.org/news/2011/06/alabama-senate-legislature-sends-pain-capable-unborn-child-protection-act-to-governor-bentley).

“I believe that life begins at conception,” Gov. Bentley said, “and I signed this bill to further commit my promise to protect the life of an unborn child.” The law goes into effect on September 1.

As drafted by National Right to Life’s Department of State Legislation, the model Pain-Capable Unborn Child Protection Act protects from abortion unborn children who are capable of feeling pain except when the mother “has a condition which so complicates her medical condition as to necessitate the abortion of her pregnancy to avert death or to avert serious risk of substantial or irreversible physical impairment of a major bodily function or…it is necessary to preserve the life of an unborn child.”

Alabama joins Oklahoma, Kansas, and Idaho as states passing the Pain-Capable Unborn Child Protection Act this session; Nebraska passed the first such law in 2010.

As noted elsewhere today at National Right to Life News Today, prompted by the atrocities committed by abortionist Kermit Gosnell, the Pennsylvania Senate passed SB 732. The measure included an amendment by state Senator Bob Mensch would ensure that abortion facilities abide by the safety standards of ambulatory surgical facilities. Previously the Pennsylvania House passed a strong clinic regulation bill.

In Louisiana the state Senate yesterday approve HB 636 that would require abortion clinics to provide women seeking abortions with information about alternatives. The “Signs of Hope Act,” passed the State Senate by a margin of 30-5.

According to Louisiana Right to Life, after Governor Jindal signs the legislation next week and the bill is enforced, the Department of Health and Hospitals will be directed to:

·         produce the final sign that will be “conspicuously” displayed in each Louisiana abortion facility in both the waiting room and the patient consultation rooms (draft of the sign at the right). 

·         create a new website and smart phone platform offering abortion alternatives and information that will empower women to consider choosing life, such as contacts for the numerous pro-life pregnancy centers across the state, information on fetal development, and more.

·         require abortion facilities to provide a woman, when making her first appointment with the abortion facility, the abortion alternatives website address 

The House passed a different measure that included other provisions, and since the session is nearly over, there is not a lot of time to reconcile the two bills.

In North Carolina, pro-lifers overrode Gov. Bev Perdue’s veto of the state budget, a budget which included a provision to strip all federal and state money from Planned Parenthood. The House did so late Monday night, the Senate this morning.

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