Louisiana State Legislature Reconvenes, Ready to Tackle Abortion Issues

State   |   Steven Ertelt   |   May 17, 2007   |   9:00AM   |   WASHINGTON, DC

Louisiana State Legislature Reconvenes, Ready to Tackle Abortion Issues Email this article
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by Steven Ertelt
LifeNews.com Editor
May 17
, 2007

Baton Rouge, LA (LifeNews.com) — The Louisiana state legislature is convening for the first time since the Supreme Court handed down its decision upholding a federal ban on partial-birth abortions. The high court’s decision reaffirmed the ability of states to approve pro-life laws limiting abortion and lawmakers are eager to get started.

Two legislators — Democratic Sen. Ben Nevers and Republican Rep. Gary Beard are taking the lead in re-establishing the illegality of partial-birth abortions with a state law.

They say that there are 300 such abortions in Louisiana and they want to make sure the abortions are prohibited. A state law would give the national ban better enforcement by guiding state and local officials.

Without a state partial-birth abortion ban, enforcement would be left only to federal authorities who may not have the time nor resources to uphold it in all fifty states.

Meanwhile, Rep. A.G. Crowe, a Republican , is planning to revise the state’s Right to Know law that gives women considering an abortion information about the risks and alternatives as well as details on fetal development.

He wants to include information about the ability of the unborn child to feel pain during the abortion procedure.

His measure received approval by the state House in the last legislative session but was held up in the Senate and never received a vote.

The laws would follow a state abortion ban lawmakers put in place for the moment Roe v. Wade is overturned. Signed by Gov. Kathleen Blanco, a pro-life Democrat, the trigger law goes into effect to prohibit abortions once the high court reverses that landmark case.

Predictably, abortion advocates plan on opposing the common sense bills as Julie Mickelberry, of the Planned Parenthood of Louisiana and the Mississippi Delta, told the New Orleans Times-Picayune that they supposedly "show an utter disregard for women’s health and safety" and "let legislators rather than doctors practice medicine."

Mickelberry plans to lobby Senate President Donald Hines, a physician, and tell him that the bill interferes with the doctor patient relationship, even though women having an abortion almost always have never met the abortion practitioner at the time of the abortion.

Crowe told the newspaper the legislation is informational only … telling a mother as much as possible so she can make an informed decision."

He admitted that Hines likely held up the bill last year and could do so again this time around but said, "I don’t want to make this personal and say anything that jeopardizes my bill."

Nevers and Beard told the newspaper that their bills, House Bill 614 and Senate Bill 161, are expected to win approve in the health committees in their respective chambers in the coming weeks.

Related web sites:
Louisiana Right to Life Federation – https://www.lartl.org