Kentucky Governor Will Defend Ban on Abortions of Babies With Down Syndrome Against ACLU Lawsuit

State   |   Micaiah Bilger   |   Mar 25, 2019   |   11:23AM   |   Frankfort, KY

Kentucky Gov. Matt Bevin promised Sunday to fight “with every resource at our disposal” to defend a law banning eugenic abortions based on an unborn baby’s sex, race or disability such as Down syndrome.

The law passed the state Senate earlier this month and the state House in February. It prohibits abortionists from aborting unborn babies if the sole reason is because of the unborn baby’s gender, race or disability. Abortionists who violate the measure could have their licenses revoked and face felony charges.

However, the American Civil Liberties Union sued, and a federal judge agreed to temporarily block the law last week.

In a video posted online Sunday, Bevin responded to the lawsuit by saying he will fight to defend unborn babies in Kentucky, WHAS News 11 reports.

“You find people now defending this very kind of barbaric, outdated, bigoted, racist, eugenics philosophy,” Bevin said in the video. “So we had, from the moment this bill was passed and I was delighted to sign it into law, saying that in Kentucky we’re not going to kill children based on their race. We’re not going to kill children based on their gender. We’re not going to kill children based on a perceived disability.”

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“We will fight the ACLU’s lawsuit against this bill with every resource at our disposal,” Bevin said. “We will continue to fight for life.”

Last week, ACLU attorney Brigitte Amiri blasted Kentucky lawmakers for attempting to chip away at Roe v. Wade, UPI reports.

“Decisions about whether to end a pregnancy must be made by the woman and her family,” Amiri said. “But this law takes the decision away from them and hands it over to politicians. … We won’t stand for it.”

The ACLU also is suing to overturn the state heartbeat law, which prohibits abortions after an unborn baby’s heartbeat is detectable. A federal judge also temporarily blocked that law.

Kentucky lawmakers have been working hard for years to protect unborn babies from abortion, but the abortion industry and activist judges repeatedly have thwarted their attempts. According to the AP, the ACLU has filed four lawsuits since 2017 to challenge pro-life laws in the state.

Right now, pro-lifers are watching the U.S. Supreme Court closely as it considers a similar Indiana law that bans discriminatory abortions based on an unborn baby’s race, sex or disability.

One of the groups supporting the Indiana law, the American Center for Law and Justice, urged the high court to hear the case on behalf of 44 families of children with disabilities.

“Indiana’s law protects children like theirs and recognizes that unborn children deserve protection from invidious discrimination,” the legal group wrote in its brief. “Though many of these families ultimately lost their children, these parents do not consider that to have diminished the importance of the children’s lives.”

Describing the law as a ban on eugenic abortions, ACLJ pointed out that many vulnerable parents are pressured into the “irreversible decision” to abort unborn babies with disabilities.

Unborn babies with Down syndrome and other disabilities are discriminated against at alarming rates. Parents frequently report feeling pressured to abort them by doctors and genetic counselors.

The rate of unborn babies who are aborted after a Down syndrome diagnosis is about 67 percent in the U.S., according to CBS News. Some put the rate as high as 90 percent, but it is difficult to determine the exact number because the government does not keep detailed statistics about abortion.

Indiana was the second state to establish a safeguard to protect unborn children with Down syndrome and other disabilities. Eight states also prohibit sex-selection abortions prior to viability.