By Bridget Sielicki
Members in the French National Assembly, the country’s lower house of parliament, overwhelmingly approved a bill Tuesday that would enshrine a “right” to abortion in the country’s constitution. The measure passed 493-30.
The proposal would amend Article 34 of the country’s constitution to read: “the law determines the conditions by which is exercised the freedom of women to have recourse to an abortion, which is guaranteed.”
President Emmanuel Macron announced his intention to amend the constitution to protect abortion last November. At that time, it was met with pushback from pro-life groups.
“Instead of including abortion right in the French Constitution, it is urgent to establish a true abortion prevention policy aimed at avoiding a large number of personal tragedies by presenting other alternatives to the women concerned,” the organization Alliance Vita said in a statement.
Lawmakers used the U.S.’s overturn of Roe v. Wade as justification that abortion should be constitutionally protected.
“History is full of examples of… fundamental rights… which everyone… believed to have been definitively acquired, and which were then swept away… as we were recently reminded by the decision of the US Supreme Court,” Justice Minister Éric Dupont-Moretti said in a speech before fellow lawmakers. “We now have irrefutable proof that no democracy, not even the largest of them all, is immune.”
Though abortion supporters often speak of abortion as if it were a fundamental right, there is no right for anyone to kill an innocent human being.
The proposed amendment also comes at a time when the country is experiencing surging abortion rates. In 2022, the country saw a record-high number of 234,300 abortions, with a rate of 16.9 per 1,000 women of childbearing age — the highest since 1990.
The measure now goes to parliament’s upper house Senate for debate. If it passes the Senate, it must then be approved either in a referendum or by a three-fifths majority of a joint session of parliament. According to CNN, if the amendment does become law, France will be the first country in the world to declare abortion a constitutional right.
Editor’s note. This appeared at Live Action News and reposted with permission.