by Steven Ertelt
June 2, 2006
Baton Rouge, LA (LifeNews.com) — Louisiana Gov. Kathleen Blanco, a Democrat, says she will sign into law a statewide abortion ban that would take effect if the Supreme Court reverses Roe v. Wade. The decision is delighting pro-life groups who are pressing for the ban in the legislature.
The abortion ban only contains an exception to allow abortions in order to save the life of the mother. Blanco had previously said she wanted rape and incest exceptions added as well, but the House and Senate voted against them.
Despite not having the extra exceptions, Blanco said she will sign the abortion ban anyway.
She told the Associated Press in an interview that the exceptions would have "been reasonable" but she won’t veto the legislation because of it.
Dorinda Bordlee, a longtime pro-life Louisiana attorney and vice president of the Bioethics Defense Fund, told LifeNews.com that pro-life advocates applaud Blanco’s decision to sign the abortion ban.
"The Louisiana pro-life community is grateful that Governor Blanco, as a woman, understands how legalized abortion facilitates the sexual exploitation of women and sanctions the destruction of Louisiana’s most precious resource, it’s children," Bordlee said.
"Our approach to include a post-Roe activation clause, sometimes called a trigger clause, enabled the legislators to speak their hearts without abortion industry lawyer’s breathing down their backs," Bordlee explained.
"It allowed post-abortive women to educate the legislators about how abortion negatively impacted their lives in profound ways," Bordlee added. "Other states that choose to follow Louisiana’s lead will help build a consensus to reverse Roe."
The House approved the measure on a 85-17 vote on Tuesday and rejected rape and incest exceptions by a 67-36 margin. The Senate already signed off on the bill with a 31-6 vote and defeated the extra exceptions on a 20-17 vote.
The bill now goes to the Senate to approve changes the House made. That vote is expected to be a formality and then the bill will be sent to Gov. Blanco.
Under the bill, abortion practitioners found guilty of doing abortions would receive up to 10 years in prison and pay a $100,000 fine.
Lawmakers approved an abortion ban in 1991 that did have rape and incest exceptions in it and was eventually vetoed by then Gov. Buddy Roemer. Federal courts declared it unconstitutional in 1992.
The measure is SB 33, the Human Life Protection Act.