When the Tennessee General Assembly adjourns later this week, it will close what has been a truly historic legislative session for the pro-life cause. On Monday evening and Tuesday afternoon, pro-life state Senator Mae Beavers (R-Mt. Juliet) successfully passed two priorities for Right to Life supporters: the requirement that abortion providers have admitting privileges at a licensed hospital and broadening the state’s existing fetal homicide law to ensure that every unborn child is considered a person when the victim of criminal assault or murder.
Earlier in this session legislators also banned the use of webcam internet hookups for dispensing abortion drugs, gave final legislative approval to SJR 127 placing a proposed pro-life constitutional amendment on the ballot for 2014, and worked with the Governor to administratively defund Planned Parenthood’s abortion facilities of tax dollars in Tennessee. Additionally, the state House passed HR 110 recognizing the work of life-affirming pregnancy resource centers which offer confidential care and counsel throughout the state.
“Tennessee Right to Life thanks the members of the 107th General Assembly for moving the pro-life agenda forward in such a profound way,” said Brian Harris, the organization’s president. “We are grateful to pro-life legislative leadership, our bill sponsors and the supermajorities who voted the will of their constituents for the protection of abortion-vulnerable women and their unborn children.”
Harris also acknowledged the work and fortitude of the organization’s volunteer lobbyist, Karen Brukardt. “For the past 11 years Karen has dedicated herself to doing everything possible to ensure passage of SJR 127 so that Tennesseans can decide for ourselves what state laws will be on the fundamental matter of life and death,” said Harris. “The successful passage of SJR 127 and other protective policies are the fruit of Karen’s hard work and Tennessee Right to Life is indebted to such a committed advocate,” Harris said.