Idaho will now protect preborn children from first detectable heartbeat


Idaho Governor Brad Little signed Senate Bill 1309 today, protecting most preborn children once an embryonic heartbeat can be detected. This is typically around six weeks gestation, though the heart begins beating between 16 and 22 days after fertilization. The bill successfully made it through both state houses just last week.

The law contains exceptions for rape, incest, and medical emergency for the mother, as noted in a previous report from Live Action News. However, it is never medically necessary to directly and intentionally kill a preborn human being.

The Idaho Statesman reports:

The bill was modeled after a Texas law passed last year that allows the public to sue anyone who performs or facilitates an abortion. Idaho’s is slightly different — it only allows family to sue abortion providers, but doubles the $10,000 maximum that Texas plaintiffs can seek.

According to National Review, Gov. Little wrote a letter to the Senate president and lieutenant governor after signing the legislation, expressing some apparent concerns with the law. “I stand in solidarity with all Idahoans who seek to protect the lives of preborn babies,” he wrote, adding, “I fear the novel civil enforcement mechanism will in short order be proven both unconstitutional and unwise.” Little also said, “I am particularly concerned for those vulnerable women and children who lack the capacity or familial support to report incest and sexual assault. Ultimately, this legislation risks re-traumatizing victims by affording monetary [incentives] to wrongdoers and family members of rapists.”

READ: PRO-LIFE WIN: Texas Supreme Court effectively ends lawsuit involving Heartbeat Act

The Statesman added:

Little… urged lawmakers to fix parts of the bill. “I remain committed to protecting the lives of pre-born babies and strongly encourage the Legislature to promptly rectify any unintended consequences with this legislation to ensure the state sufficiently protects the interests of victims of sexual assault,” Little said in his transmittal letter.

Rebecca Gibron, interim CEO for Planned Parenthood Great Northwest, Hawaii, Alaska, Indiana, Kentucky, told the Statesman that she believes the bill is “blatantly unconstitutional,” despite the fact that the Texas law on which it is mirrored has withstood court challenges up to and including those at the U.S. Supreme Court.

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