Indiana Senate Passes Bill to Make It Next State to Ban Abortions Based on Down Syndrome

State   |   Micaiah Bilger   |   Feb 3, 2016   |   8:03PM   |   Indianapolis, IN

Indiana pro-life legislators are resurrecting a bill to protect unborn babies from being discriminated against in the womb because of gender or a genetic abnormality.

The state Senate passed the bill Tuesday in a 35-14 vote, according to the Indy Star. Indiana Senate Bill 313 would ban abortions if the sole reason a woman seeks one is because of her unborn baby’s gender or a genetic abnormality such as Down syndrome. The bill also would require that parents of unborn babies diagnosed with a fatal anomaly receive information about perinatal hospice; however, it does not ban abortions in these cases, according to the report.

“[The bill] sends one clear message to the nation and to our fellow Hoosiers, and that is that we value life,” said state Sen. Travis Holdman, who co-authored the bill.

Mike Fichter, president and CEO of Indiana Right to Life, applauded the state Senate for passing the bill and urged the House to approve the bill and send it to Gov. Mike Pence’s desk.

“Indiana has a historic opportunity to protect unborn children with disabilities by extending civil rights protections preventing these children from being aborted solely on the basis of their disability,” Fichter told LifeNews. “Our society does not tolerate discrimination against people with disabilities who have already been born, and neither should we tolerate such discrimination against unborn children.”

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Abortion discrimination against unborn babies with disabilities or because of their gender has become a growing concern in the U.S. Studies show up to 90 percent of unborn babies diagnosed with Down syndrome are aborted. Other evidence points to sex-selection abortions, where unborn girls often are targeted, happening in America.

Several states recently introduced bills to end the deadly practice. Missouri state lawmakers recently proposed a bill to ban these discriminatory abortions, LifeNews reported. Ohio lawmakers also considered a bill last fall. North Dakota already has a ban in place. It became the first in the United States to ban these discriminatory abortions in 2013.

The current Indiana bill also includes a provision that would make the sale of unborn babies’ body parts a felony in Indiana, the report states. This would address concerns that Planned Parenthood and other abortion businesses may be selling aborted babies’ body parts for a profit.

Last year, Indiana pro-life lawmakers attempted to pass a similar bill; however, pro-abortion legislators in the state House stopped it, LifeNews reported.

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