Idaho Fetal Pain Bill Passes House State Affairs Committee

This morning medical, legal and personal testimony was presented regarding SB1165 prohibiting abortions at 20 weeks or later, except to preserve the health of the mother. Since Roe v Wade was decided 38 years ago, advances in medical science show that unborn children feel and respond to pain by 20 weeks, and probably several weeks earlier. Cases subsequent to Roe have focused on viability of the unborn child in determining when to permit restrictions on abortion. When Roe was decided that was 28 weeks. Now it is less, but not 20 weeks. SB 1165 makes legislative findings that unborn children at 20 weeks feel pain and that the state has an interested in protecting unborn children from the infliction of pain caused by abortion procedures. Court cases do not address this issue, although opponents say Roe v Wade and subsequent court decisions make viability the only standard. The Committee passed the bill on a party line vote 14-4 with Republicans favoring and Democrats opposing the measure. The bill has already passed the Senate and now goes to the House Floor. I am pleased to be a co-sponsor of the bill.


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