Arkansas Senate Approves Partial-Birth Abortion Ban, Governor Beebe Will Sign
by Steven Ertelt
February 19, 2009
Little Rock, AR (LifeNews.com) — The Arkansas state Senate gave its approval to a bill that would ban partial-birth abortions in Arkansas in line with the federal ban. The state House has already approved the legislation and Governor Mike Beebe says he will sign the final bill into law.
The Senate voted Thursday 30-3 in favor of the ban that Rep. Dawn Creekmore, a Democrat, sponsored. The House vote was 84-6 for the ban.
In the Senate, only Democratic Sens. David Johnson of Little Rock, Sue Madison of Fayetteville and Mary Anne Salmon of North Little Rock voted against the measure.
Sen. Cecile Bledsoe, a Republican from Rogers, served as the Senate sponsor of the bill during its time in the chamber.
Creekmore has said she wants the state to ban partial-birth abortions because she is concerned a pro-abortion Congress may overturn the federal ban.
Creekmore told the panel her bill is similar to the national law except that it authorizes the state medical board to take action against those who violate it and that violations result in a six-year prison term instead of two years on the national level.
The bill has a life of the mother exception but, following the national law, includes no exception for the health of the mother since the gruesome abortion procedure is never necessary to protect a mother’s health.
In fact, a partial-birth abortion, like any other abortion, could have serious medical and mental health ramifications for women.
Martha Adcock, attorney for the Family Council, a statewide pro-life group, helped Creekmore write the bill.
She told the House committee that the state health department reported 4,844 abortions in Arkansas in 2007 but said there was no information about whether any were partial-birth abortions.
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