by Steven Ertelt
April 23, 2007
Baton Rouge, LA (LifeNews.com) — State lawmakers in Louisiana have revisited the state’s ban on partial-birth abortions following the Supreme Court’s ruling last week upholding a federal ban on the gruesome three-day-long abortion procedure. This is the second time the state has addressed the controversial abortion procedure.
The state’s partial-birth abortion ban was signed into law by Governor Mike Foster in 1997 and was eventually declared unconstitutional by a federal court in 2003 because the high court’s previous decision striking down a similar ban in Nebraska.
Representatives Gary Beard of Baton Rouge and Steve Scalise of Jefferson are the prime sponsors of House Bill 614, which mirrors the language in the federal partial-birth abortion ban.
“We may need to go back, re-establish our law, back it up, make it stronger. Just in case,” Scalise said shortly after the ruling.
With the ruling, the federal law makes partial-birth abortions illegal, but they introduced the bill to help local state and law enforcement enforce the ban.
The bill will get a hearing in the House Criminal Justice Committee, according to an AP report, and prohibits partial-birth abortions except if necessary to save the life of the mother. Many doctors and medical groups say the abortion procedure is never medically necessary.
If someone does a partial-birth abortion in the state, they would be jailed for anywhere from one to 10 years and be fined between $10,000-$100,000. The federal law calls for a two year prison term for doing a partial-birth abortion.
Meanwhile, State Sen. Ben Nevers, told the Baton Rouge Advocate newspaper that he was pleased with the Supreme Court’s partial-birth abortion ruling because it put the high court one step closer to overturning Roe.
He was the sponsor of a bill that became law last year making abortion illegal in Louisiana once Roe is reversed.
“I believe many of us in this country have recognized the horrible error the Supreme Court wrote in the Roe versus Wade decision,” Nevers told the newspaper.
“I believe many of us in this country have recognized the horrible error the Supreme Court wrote in the Roe versus Wade decision,” Nevers said.
The state health department says there were 11,224 abortions in Louisiana in 2004, the latest year for which there is data available.