An Indiana state lawmaker announced his plans this week to introduce a measure to end abortions in his state.
The NWI Times reports state Rep. Curt Nisly, R-Goshen, said his goal is to “deregulate abortion right out of existence in Indiana.”
Nisly said he plans to introduce a measure to protect unborn babies’ right to life in January when the state General Assembly convenes. According to the report, Nisly’s proposal would make abortions illegal and allow criminal prosecution of individuals, including abortionists and women, who participate in an abortion.
“It’s time to bring the Roe v. Wade era to its logical conclusion,” Nisly said. Later, he added: “The Supreme Court has been wrong before. On issues like slavery, on segregation and a host of other issues, and they’ve reversed themselves, eventually.”
Here’s more from the report:
Indiana law already declares that “human physical life begins when a human ovum is fertilized by a human sperm,” and holds that abortion is a criminal act except when performed following very specific regulations that generally prohibit abortion beyond 12 weeks of pregnancy.
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Nisly’s plan would delete the regulations permitting abortion and treat all life as equal from the moment of conception, meaning the death of a fetus through abortion could be prosecuted identically to the murder of a child or an adult.
“The code is there, but Indiana has failed to use it to stop abortion. Instead, they regulate it, which causes approximately 22 Hoosier babies to die every single day,” said Amy Schlichter, Hoosiers for Life executive director.
If the measure passes the state legislature, it likely will be challenged by abortion activists and overturned in the courts. Because of the current political climate and the precedents set in the U.S. Supreme Court case Roe v. Wade, courts would almost certainly strike down the measures. In 2012, the Oklahoma Supreme Court struck down a bill that would have prohibited all abortions by recognizing unborn babies as “persons”; the court ruled that the measure was unconstitutional.
Many pro-lifers agree that overturning Roe v. Wade is an important goal toward ending abortion, but the current Supreme Court justices are most unlikely to do so. Even with President-elect Donald Trump vowing to nominate a “pro-life” justice to fill the late Justice Antonin Scalia’s seat, the high court still only would have four justices who likely would overturn Roe. The five other justices almost certainly would not overturn the abortion decision.
Overturning Roe could be a possibility in the future if Trump has the opportunity to nominate several justices to the high court during his presidency. However, it seems unlikely to happen in the near future, because there are so many factors involved. Current justices would have to leave the bench, especially ones who support abortion; Trump’s nominees to fill their spots would have to support overturning Roe, and their nomination to the high court would have to be confirmed by the U.S. Senate.