NewsPublic Affairs / February 24, 2016

Senate Committee Revives Abortion Bill As Amendment

INDIANAPOLIS -- Senate lawmakers Wednesday succeeded in adding one abortion bill into another, after the first was blocked by the House.

Senate Bill 313 -- banning abortions based on race, gender or disability -- passed the full Senate earlier this session, but it couldn’t get a hearing in the House. So, a Senate committee revived 313 in the form of an amendment to a House bill that deals with the disposal of fetal tissue.

The arguments in committee echo those made earlier this session on the issue. Sen. Mark Stoops says it is unethical to force women to give birth to disabled children in a state that doesn’t provide them with adequate support.

“The women and the families who make these choices know that there is nothing for them," Stoops said. "Once that child is born it’s all going to be on them, and they understandably might decide that they’re not in a position to do it.”

Sen. Michael Young counters by arguing that children with disabilities deserve a chance at life.

“I mean I guess everybody’s different on how they see what the purpose and value of life is," Young said. "My cousin was born with a disability that severely impacted her life. But everyone in our family loved and cared for her, and she was a joy.”

The amendment, as well as its overriding bill, passed with a vote of 6-3.

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