Georgia Pro-Life Org Upset House Passes No Pro-Life Bills

State   |   Steven Ertelt   |   Apr 18, 2011   |   6:04PM   |   Atlanta, GA

Georgia Right to Life is not happy that the state legislature didn’t preclude any pro-life legislative victories for unborn children in the same way numerous states across the country have approved bills this year.

Thursday, April 14, marked the end of the annual forty-day legislative session of the Georgia General Assembly, but GRTL says it also marked a new low in the State House’s relationship with Georgia Right to Life and its pro-life membership. For the second year in a row, there was no pro-life legislation enacted in the House while state Senate leaders, it says, “led by example and passed strong pro-life bills each of the last four years.”

“House Speaker David Ralston, who claims to be prolife, blocked efforts by House members on two meaningful bills, ensuring they were never taken up in committee,” the organization told LifeNews today. “He also ignored two excellent Senate bills which had passed with every Republican senator voting “yes”. In response, the Speaker offered his own “prolife” bills. The Speaker’s bills were deeply flawed and damaging to the state’s ability to protect the preborn.”

Dan Becker, President of GRTL, explained what happened.

“If passed, these fake prolife bills would have nullified twelve years of prolife gains. Both bills were surgically designed to allow for abortions through all nine months. In addition, the Speaker’s bill introduced “rape and incest” exceptions’ in the Georgia code for the first time in twelve years,” he lamented.

GRTL says, late in the session, Ralston backed what looked like a prolife bill. The Rules Committee even amended the bill with seemingly prolife language. But an attorney GRTL worked with explained how the measure’s language was excerpted directly from Nancy Pelosi’s federal “Obamacare” bill and would have had little to no prolife impact.

At the time, GRTL legislative director Mike Griffin wondered, “Why were Planned Parenthood and other groups doing nothing to oppose it? This bill was a placebo; it was meant to make us feel good–it was a fake.”

GRTL said pro-life members of the House and Senate were frustrated by this year’s inaction and leaders who attempted to work with the Speaker found closed doors and empty promises — something Becker called a “left-of-center shift towards a pro-abortion agenda” even though a majority of Georgia residents are pro-life.

In contrast, GRTL points to Georgia’s solidly prolife electorate and it noted a non-binding question on 2010 primary ballots, 75% of voters in 46 counties approved a state human life amendment.

“There is no political reason for Georgia Republicans to shy away from strong, meaningful prolife legislation,” said PAC director Melanie Crozier, “Georgia is a prolife state.”

“Regrettably, we are left now with only one option,” said Becker. “We must inform constituents that these obstructers have been hostile to prolife legislation, and our PAC must work to elect legislators who will represent the sanctity of life by their actions, not just their words.”It would appear that being prolife is mainstream politics everywhere except the Georgia House. It’s time that changed.”