Utah Bill Would Make It 4th State to Ban Abortions on Babies With Down Syndrome

State   Steven Ertelt   Jan 22, 2018   |   4:22PM    Salt Lake City, UT

Legislators across the country are up in arms following reports that nations like Iceland and Denmark are killing babies with Down Syndrome in abortions to specifically eliminate such people. America has a high rate of abortions on such babies as well and so several states have endeavored to ban abortions when done specifically to target a baby with Down syndrome.

Utah is aiming to become the 4th state to ban such abortions:

A state lawmaker said Monday she is planning to pursue legislation that would make it illegal for a medical provider to perform an abortion if they have knowledge that the woman seeking the procedure is doing so for “the sole reason” that the child would be born with Down syndrome.

Rep. Karianne Lisonbee, R-Clearfield, said if passed, the bill would make performing an abortion in that circumstance a class A misdemeanor.

Lisonbee and Sen. Curtis Bramble, R-Provo, plan to discuss the legislation in more detail at a press conference slated for 11:30 a.m. today.

Asked whether she had concerns about how to enforce the law, Lisonbee said, “I think there are ways around every law.”

“People break laws all the time,” she told the Deseret News. “That’s why we have a criminal justice system.”

Indiana, Ohio and North Dakota have led the way in banning abortions on babies with Down Syndrome and other states like Illinois are considering measures like this Utah legislation.

Unborn babies with Down syndrome and other disabilities are discriminated against at astronomical rates. Parents whose unborn babies have Down syndrome or other disabilities frequently report feeling pressure to abort them by doctors and genetic counselors.

Earlier this year, a CBS News report shocked the nation with its exposure of the discriminatory abortion trend. According to the report, nearly 100 percent of unborn babies who test positive for Down syndrome are aborted in Iceland. The rate in France was 77 percent in 2015, 90 percent in the United Kingdom and 67 percent in the United States between 1995 and 2011, according to CBS.

Some put the rate as high as 90 percent in the United States, but it is difficult to determine the exact number because the U.S. government does not keep detailed statistics about abortion.