Kentucky pro-life lawmakers refused to attend the opening of the state General Assembly last week because a pastor began the meeting by praying for abortions.
The Rev. Lauren Mayfield, pastor of the Lynhurst United Church of Christ in Louisville, Kentucky, was a guest of pro-abortion state Rep. Joni Jenkins, D-Shively, a member of the church, according to the Daily Independent.
During the opening prayer on Tuesday, Feb. 23, Mayfield prayed for “these legislators [to] work toward preserving the dignity of women in the quest for reproductive justice,” the report states. She also prayed for vision, peace and justice and asked the “holy source” to lead lawmakers in the “spirit of collaboration and gentleness.”
The report continues:
So when House Speaker Greg Stumbo, D-Prestonsburg, gaveled in the House Wednesday, there were no Republicans – or nearly none – present. (Four were shown as answering the roll call on their voting machines but they apparently quickly departed the chamber.)
House Minority Leader Jeff Hoover, R-Jamestown, said the Republicans’ absence was deliberate.
“We are extremely disappointed in the choice by Speaker Stumbo and House Democrats for the offering of prayer yesterday,” said Hoover. “Today, we just decided to have our own time of prayer and avoid the embarrassment of yesterday and not be a part of it.”
… Hoover believes Mayfield’s reference to “reproductive justice” was staged by Stumbo, Jenkins, and Rep. Mary Lou Marzian, D-Louisville, who deny the charge.
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Marzian is pro-choice and sponsor of a bill relating to male prescriptions for erectile dysfunction drugs to mimic and satirize a bill requiring women to undergo face-to-face counseling 24 hours prior to an abortion. That bill has been signed into law. Marzian’s would require men to make two doctors’ visits, supply a note of permission from their wives and an oath on the bible they’d use the prescription only for relations with their wives.
Stumbo and Jenkins said they had no advance knowledge of the subject of Mayfield’s prayer.
In the past few months, pro-lifers have been winning long-fought victories for unborn babies and their moms in the Kentucky legislature.
One of the measures that pro-abortion legislators oppose is Senate Bill 4, which pro-life Gov. Matt Bevin recently signed into law. It is the first pro-life law to pass the Kentucky legislature in 12 years.
The new law amends the state’s informed consent law to require either an in-person or a real-time video consultation between a doctor and woman at least 24 hours before having an abortion, according to the Associated Press. During the meeting, the woman will be informed about the risks of abortion, the age of her unborn baby and the support available to her if she chooses childbirth.
Legislators said the bill was needed because some abortion facilities were not conducting live consultations with women before abortion procedures; instead, they would instruct women to call in and listen to a recorded message, which didn’t allow women to ask questions or voice concerns, according to the AP.