by Steven Ertelt
March 14, 2006
Atlanta, GA (LifeNews.com) — The Georgia state House on Monday rejected a measure that would have provided a conscience clause for pharmacists who want to opt out of dispensing drugs that can produce abortions.
The House members voted 82 to 78 in favor of the legislation, but it was nine votes shy of the 91-vote majority needed to approve the legislation.
State Rep. James Mills, a Republican who sponsored the measure, said it could have had enough votes had some absent lawmakers been present.
"We’ve got several people out sick and on excused absences," Mills said, according to a Gainesville Times report.
"The bill is a conscious clause for pharmacists," Mills said. "It gives a pharmacist the right to object, just like we give doctors and nurses who object to abortion."
He said a pharmacist “should not be put in a position to lose his livelihood over his strong moral beliefs.”
The bill has died for the session because it did not get full House approve before crossover day — when legislation switches from one chamber to the other.
Mills told the media he would work to get the Senate-approved version of the measure through the House and would conduct additional lobbying to try to get enough votes on the floor.
The Senate also approved other key pieces of pro-life legislation, including an unborn victims bill, a bill allowing women to see an ultrasound before an abortion, and a bill promoting adult stem cell research.
Georgia Right to Life backs all four of the Senate-aproved measures and said in a statement provided to LifeNews.com that their "efforts will turn to the opposite chambers."
The pro-life group also backs an omnibus license tag package that includes a Choose Life license plate.
Related web sites:
Georgia Right to Life – https://www.grtl.org