As pro-life legislation sweeps the nation, several governors are either signing or pledging to support abortion bans that cross their desks. In Alabama, Gov. Kay Ivey signed a bill into law, one that is being called “one of the strongest pro-life bills” in the country. In Missouri, Gov. Mike Parson just signed a bill banning abortion after eight weeks. In South Carolina, Republican Governor Henry McMaster has promised his support of pro-life legislation, while Louisiana Democratic Governor John Bel Edwards has indicated he would cross party lines by fully supporting a heartbeat bill.
South Carolina’s House passed a bill last month which would ban abortions after a fetal heartbeat can be detected. The bill is now in the state Senate. In speaking to a crowd gathered at the state’s annual GOP convention, McMaster voiced his support of the legislation, saying, “This is a pro-life state. When that heartbeat bill gets to my desk, I will sign it.” He reiterated his support in an interview with Fox & Friends. “Life is precious,” he said, “and we must protect it.”
The movement of the current bill to the Senate is an encouraging step for the state. Similar legislation was introduced in 2013, 2015, 2017, and 2018, but all of those bills died before making it to the House or Senate floor.
In Louisiana, Democratic Governor John Bel Edwards said he is in full support of a Louisiana heartbeat bill. “My inclination is to sign it,” he told a crowd. “It’s consistent with my unblemished pro-life record in my years as a legislator and governor.”
Edwards’ break from party lines stems from his own experience after his wife was pressured to have an abortion when it was revealed that his unborn daughter had a spinal defect. The couple resisted the abortion. “In eight years in the legislature, I was a pro-life legislator, 100 percent with the Louisiana Right to Life,” Edwards said at a press conference on May 16. “When I ran for governor, I said I was pro-life and so that’s something that’s consistent.”
Edwards may well have the chance to sign his bill into law soon. On May 6, the Louisiana Senate passed legislation which would ban abortions once a fetal heartbeat is detected. The bill is now in the House, where it is expected to pass.
The strong promises of these governors come at a time when abortion has risen as a hot-button issue across the country. While states like New York and Illinois are passing extreme abortion bills which remove all restrictions, others like Georgia, Kentucky, Mississippi, Ohio, Alabama, and Missouri are all responding by attempting to strengthen legal protections for preborn children. While most of these new pro-life laws are tied up in legal challenges, they are all a positive sign that more states are willing to fight for the protection of the most innocent and vulnerable among us at all stages of development.
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