Louisiana Governor Says He’ll Sign ‘Heartbeat’ Abortion Bill

May 30, 2019 by Dan McCue

Louisiana Governor John Bel Edwards said Thursday that he will sign a strict new abortion law barring the procedure once a heartbeat is detectable — a point that comes before many women realize they are pregnant.

In a written statement, Edwards said “I ran for governor as a pro-life candidate after serving as a pro-life legislator for eight years. As governor, I have been true to my word and my beliefs on this issue. But it is also my sincere belief that being pro-life means more than just being pro-birth.”

The governor then pointed to his record, saying he’s expanded access to health care for working Louisianans, passed “sweeping” criminal justice reforms, expanded workplace protections for members of the LGBT community, and fought to raise the minimum wage while also ensuring women are paid the same as men for doing the same work.

“I know there are many who feel just as strongly as I do on abortion and disagree with me – and I respect their opinions,” Edwards said. “As I prepare to sign this bill, I call on the overwhelming bipartisan majority of legislators who voted for it to join me in continuing to build a better Louisiana that cares for the least among us and provides more opportunity for everyone.”

The Louisiana House voted 79-23 Wednesday to ban abortions as early as six weeks of pregnancy. More than a dozen Democratic lawmakers voted for the bill, along with all of the Republicans.

The Louisiana legislation does not include an exception for a pregnancy due to rape or incest. It does allow abortions to prevent a woman’s death or if the pregnancy presents “a serious risk of substantial and irreversible impairment of a major bodily function.”

It also allows an abortion if the pregnancy is “medically futile.”

The bill defines ‘medically futile’ as meaning that, in reasonable medical judgment, an unborn child has a profound and irremediable congenital or chromosomal anomaly that is incompatible with sustaining life after birth.

With Governor Edwards’ signature, Louisiana will join six other states — Alabama, Georgia, Kentucky, Missouri, Mississippi and Ohio — that have recently passed laws banning abortion.

Alabama’s law remains the strictest, imposing a penalty of up to 99 years for doctors who would defy the ban.

All of the previously passed laws are now the subject of legal challenges and have not gone into effect.

On May 24, a federal judge issued a preliminary injunction blocking Mississippi’s fetal heartbeat anti-abortion law from going into effect, saying it infringes on women’s health care rights.

In related news, the U.S. Supreme Court on Tuesday upheld Indiana’s law requiring abortion providers to bury or cremate fetal remains, but left undisturbed a Seventh Circuit ruling that invalidated a broader measure that would prevent a woman from having an abortion based on a fetus’s gender, race, disability or genetic disorder.

State News

Inmate Killed Herself One Day Before Parole Hearing. Now California Will Pay $1.5 Million Criminal Justice
Inmate Killed Herself One Day Before Parole Hearing. Now California Will Pay $1.5 Million

SACRAMENTO, Calif. — Erika Rocha was 15 when she was accused of shooting the operator of a Southern California group home in February 1996. She was charged with attempted murder and set to be tried as an adult when she pleaded guilty and began serving a... Read More

State Attorneys General Sue To Block New Immigration Rule Immigration
State Attorneys General Sue To Block New Immigration Rule
August 16, 2019
by Tom Ramstack

The attorneys general from 13 states filed a lawsuit this week to block a new Trump administration rule that makes it harder for immigrants receiving public assistance to get green cards for permanent residency. The lawsuit is pending in federal court in the state of Washington.... Read More

Katko, Brindisi Launch Bipartisan Effort to Address Lake Ontario Woes
Katko, Brindisi Launch Bipartisan Effort to Address Lake Ontario Woes
August 15, 2019
by Dan McCue

WASHINGTON - Representatives John Katko and Anthony Brindisi have launched a bipartisan effort to hold the international commission that manages outflows from Lake Ontario accountable for recent historic flooding. Katko, a Republican, and Brindisi, a Democrat, have gotten the Government Accountability Office, a nonpartisan group that... Read More

California To Ban Pesticide Trump’s EPA Rescued From Elimination State News
California To Ban Pesticide Trump’s EPA Rescued From Elimination

LOS ANGELES — California regulators on Wednesday took formal legal steps to ban a widely used pesticide that had been rescued from elimination by the Trump administration despite links to developmental disorders. The move by the state Environmental Protection Agency is all but certain to draw... Read More

Federal Judge Bans Paperless Voting Machines in Georgia for 2020 Elections Voting
Federal Judge Bans Paperless Voting Machines in Georgia for 2020 Elections
August 15, 2019
by Dan McCue

A federal judge on Thursday ordered Georgia to stop using its "unsecure ... and grossly outdated" voting machines after this year and to have hand-marked paper ballots at the ready if new, more secure machines aren't in place by the state's presidential primary. U.S. District Judge... Read More

Ohio State Lawmaker Wants to Use Seized Fentanyl in Executions State News
Ohio State Lawmaker Wants to Use Seized Fentanyl in Executions

COLUMBUS, Ohio — An Ohio lawmaker intends to introduce a bill to allow state prison officials to used seized fentanyl to execute prisoners residing on death row. In a Monday evening email to his colleagues, state Rep. Scott Wiggam, a Wooster Republican, sought co-sponsors for his... Read More

Straight From The Well
scroll top