Florida County Measure Would Ban Abortions, Protect Unborn Children

State   |   Micaiah Bilger   |   Jul 22, 2021   |   12:40PM   |   Manatee, Florida

Leaders of a central Florida county hope to follow Texas’s lead and pass ordinances to protect unborn babies from abortion in their county.

The Herald-Tribune reports Manatee County Commissioner James Satcher received approval from his fellow commissioners in June to move forward with plans to introduce two pro-life ordinances.

Though details about the proposed ordinances are not available yet, Satcher said one would be similar to legislation in Texas, likely the Sanctuary City for the Unborn ordinances that ban abortions within city limits. The second, he said, would provide additional support through the county crisis pregnancy program to help mothers choose life for their babies, according to the report.

“Everyone knows where I stand as far as pro-life policies,” Satcher told the other commissioners in June. “So this is permission for me to work and ask for more time from the attorney and the county administrator than the two hours than they would normally give you.”

It is not clear when Satcher will introduce his proposals, but abortion activists already are planning protests.

Amy Weintraub, of Progress Florida, is organizing one next week. She told the local news that the commissioners’ plans are a “waste of time.”

Planned Parenthood of Southwest and Central Florida CEO Stephanie Fraim said she was “truly terrified” by the plan because it could “restrict abortion access” and create “legal chaos” as similar measures already have done in Texas.

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Earlier this spring, voters in Lubbock, Texas overwhelmingly passed a pro-life ordinance to ban abortions in their city, resulting in Planned Parenthood stopping abortions there. The abortion chain did sue the city, but a judge recently dismissed its lawsuit.

Fraim said the Florida county commissioners should focus on real issues, not “nonsense.”

“We should be asking our county and city commissioners to focus on the things that are critically important, not this,” she told the newspaper. “Let’s spend our time on sensible issues — our climate, education, economy and health and safety of our community. Not on this nonsense.”

But most Americans believe that protecting unborn babies from abortion is anything but “nonsense.” Polls consistently show that a strong majority of Americans support strong limits on abortion. Every year, abortion kills nearly 1 million unborn babies in the U.S.

Across the country, dozens of local governments have passed pro-life resolutions and ordinances to protect unborn babies from abortion. Ordinances are enforceable legislation; resolutions are not. To date, 33 cities in Texas, Nebraska and Ohio have passed ordinances to ban abortions through the Sanctuary City for the Unborn initiative, and pro-life leaders said even more cities are considering action this summer.

These include Naples, Florida where city leaders are scheduled to discuss the matter at their Aug. 18 meeting, according to the report.