Minnesota Pro-Life Groups Challenge Sen. Dayton on Unborn Victims

State   |   Steven Ertelt   |   Jul 17, 2003   |   9:00AM   |   WASHINGTON, DC

Minnesota Pro-Life Groups Challenge Sen. Dayton on Unborn Victims

by Steven Ertelt
LifeNews.com Editor
July 17, 2003

Minneapolis, MN (LifeNews.com) — Led by Minnesota Citizens Concerned for Life, a group of 44 pro-life organizations on Thursday challenged pro-abortion Sen. Mark Dayton to support the Unborn Victims of Violence Act (S. 146).

"When crimes of violence kill or injure an unborn child, clearly two victims deserve justice, not just one," said Scott Fischbach, MCCL executive director. "There is vast, long-standing support for this type of legislation in Minnesota, and Senator Dayton should join with us in support of Laci and Conner’s Law."

"This is a law that 84 percent of Americans want, it’s a law that has served Minnesota well for more than a decade and it’s a law that will help deter future violence against pregnant women in federal jurisdictions," Fischbach said at a news conference.

Sen. Norm Coleman is already a cosponsor of the bill.

Dayton was also encouraged to oppose a pro-abortion alternative bill that would simply enhance the penalties for assaulting a pregnant woman without acknowledging the unborn child as a victim or allowing prosecutors to add a second crime.

"We urge you to support Laci and Conner’s Law as it is — do not support phony ‘one-victim’ substitutes or other efforts to weaken or change the legislation," the groups wrote in a letter to Sen. Dayton.

Minnesota has had a state unborn victims law since 1986. It passed the state legislature with lopsided, bipartisan margins and was signed into law by former Gov. Rudy Perpich (D). The Minneapolis Star Tribune endorsed the law at the time.

Abortion advocates took the law to court and lost. The case is a major precedent for the constitutionality of unborn victims laws in other states.