Florida Chips Away at Abortion

News: US News
by Kim Tisor  •  ChurchMilitant.com  •  January 17, 2022   

Lawmakers take incremental approach

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TALLAHASSEE, Fla. (ChurchMilitant.com) - Florida lawmakers are introducing legislation that places limits on abortion, but critics question whether it goes far enough.

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Molly Smith

On Tuesday, both chambers of Florida's Legislature filed measures that, if passed, would ban physicians in the state from performing surgical abortions on babies who have reached 15 weeks' gestation. Exceptions are made for cases in which the mother's health is at risk or a fatal fetal abnormality is detected.

Cleveland Right to Life director Molly Smith explained to Church Militant why Florida might opt to dial abortion access back only 9 weeks from its current ceiling of 24 weeks: "I suspect it's because of the national pro-life culture that promotes an incremental approach to abortion laws — let's just save some of the children and come back for the rest!"

Since 2018, at least 11 states have introduced "heartbeat laws" that prevent abortion once a heartbeat is detected — usually at around six weeks.

Florida state lawmakers Kelli Stargel and Erin Grall introduced the pro-life measures on the first day of the Sunshine State's legislative session. The measures are similar to the Mississippi legislation currently under review by the U.S. Supreme Court. Pro-lifers are hoping the Mississippi case will be the one to end the judicial tyranny permitting the nationwide slaughter of the unborn.

News Report: Dueling Abortion Bills

Kim Schwartz, Texas Right to Life's media and communication director, told Church Militant she's hopeful Florida's legislation is moving the needle in the right direction:

Florida's bill ... would copy Mississippi's law at issue in the Dobbs case, which could be the vehicle to overturn Roe v. Wade currently before the Supreme Court. Simultaneously, a Florida state representative has filed a heartbeat bill, HB 167, modeled on Texas' law. These seem to indicate a willingness by the Florida Legislature to pass a strong pro-life bill this session.

Dobbs v. Jackson Women's Health Organization is the case that went before the high court in December. It deals with the constitutionality of a 2018 Mississippi law that, like the proposed Florida legislation, banned abortion after 15 weeks of pregnancy. The pro-abortion Guttmacher Institute predicts that if the majority of justices in Dobbs vote in favor of overturning Roe, as many as 26 states would outlaw abortion. California's governor Gavin Newsom, a fake Catholic, has declared that if that happens, his state will become a sanctuary for women wanting to have abortions.

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Gov. Gavin Newsom and Gov. Ron DeSantis 

Newsom's California Future of Abortion Council is calling for an "increased investment in abortion funds" in order to provide "direct logistical and practical support for patients, such as gas, lodging, transportation, childcare, doula services, food, lost wages, etc.," that it says would flood across state lines in search of an abortionist.

Governor Ron DeSantis, a Catholic, says he hasn't seen all the pro-life legislation headed his way but he is, nevertheless, welcoming it. Following an address to the legislature, he explained to media:

I haven't looked at every single bill. I think, if you look at what's been done in some of these other states (I mean when you start talking about 15 weeks where you have really serious pain and heartbeats and all this stuff), having protections, I think, is something that makes a lot of sense.

DeSantis' State of the State address kicked off a 60-day legislative session in Florida — a time for lawmakers to pass a budget and new laws.

Bans on abortion at 15 weeks do not affect chemical abortions, which are used only at earlier stages of gestation. The FDA's permanent nationwide approval last month of mail-order abortion pills for do-it-yourself chemical abortions further solidified the Culture of Death. 

Smith addressed the difficulty that pro-life warriors have in defending lives and souls from not only surgical but chemical abortions:

An FDA approval can be reversed and, in this case, must be reversed. As we have seen, unfortunately, many of the bureaucracies, both at the state and federal level, have been taken over by very liberal, leftist-focus bureaucrats who have their own political agenda at the core of their decisions.

"We must keep fighting for laws to protect life from conception," urged Smith.

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