WASHINGTON – On Tuesday, October 24, the Georgia Supreme Court issued a decision in State of Georgia v. SisterSong Women of Color Reproductive Justice Collective et al. that upholds Georgia’s LIFE Act (also known as the Heartbeat Bill). The LIFE Act was signed into law in 2019 by pro-life Governor Brian Kemp.
“We are forever thankful for the political will shown by Georgia’s pro-life elected officials including Governor Brian Kemp, Senator Ed Setzler, Labor Commissioner Bruce Thompson, and Senator Renee Unterman (ret.) who all fought for the LIFE Act’s passage in 2019,” stated Claire Bartlett, executive director of Georgia Life Alliance.
After Georgia’s Heartbeat Bill was upheld by the 11th Circuit Court of Appeals, SisterSong, Planned Parenthood, and other pro-abortion organizations brought a state constitutional challenge against H.B. 481, Georgia’s Living Infants Fairness & Equality (LIFE) Act. The organizations claimed that when the bill was signed into law in 2019 it violated the U.S. Constitution and the Georgia Constitution’s right to privacy which prohibits “political interference.”
The Georgia Supreme Court determined that the 2022 U.S. Supreme Court decision in Dobbs was controlling, and that Georgia’s LIFE Act was constitutional.
Today’s decision did not address the claim that the LIFE Act violates the Georgia Constitution through “political interference.” The case has been sent back to the lower court.
“National Right to Life celebrates this victory with our state affiliate, Georgia Life Alliance, and looks forward to the LIFE Act continuing to save thousands of lives,” stated Carol Tobias, president of National Right to Life.