Alabama Gov. Kay Ivey (R) signed the Human Life Protection Act into law, one that makes most abortions in the state at any point during pregnancy illegal, except those necessary in order to prevent “a serious health risk to the unborn child’s mother.”
Today, I signed into law the Alabama Human Life Protection Act. To the bill’s many supporters, this legislation stands as a powerful testament to Alabamians’ deeply held belief that every life is precious & that every life is a sacred gift from God. https://t.co/DwKJyAjSs8 pic.twitter.com/PIUQip6nmw
— Governor Kay Ivey (@GovernorKayIvey) May 15, 2019
“Today, I signed into law the Alabama Human Life Protection Act, a bill that was approved by overwhelming majorities in both chambers of the Legislature,” Ivey said Wednesday upon signing the bill. “To the bill’s many supporters, this legislation stands as a powerful testament to Alabamians’ deeply held belief that every life is precious and that every life is a sacred gift from God.”
“To all Alabamians, I assure you that we will continue to follow the rule of law,” the governor continued, observing the law is similar to the law in Alabama prior to 1973:
In all meaningful respects, this bill closely resembles an abortion ban that has been a part of Alabama law for well over 100 years. As today’s bill itself recognizes, that longstanding abortion law has been rendered “unenforceable as a result of the U.S. Supreme Court decision in Roe v. Wade.”
No matter one’s personal view on abortion, we can all recognize that, at least for the short term, this bill may similarly be unenforceable. As citizens of this great country, we must always respect the authority of the U.S. Supreme Court even when we disagree with their decisions. Many Americans, myself included, disagreed when Roe v. Wade was handed down in 1973. The sponsors of this bill believe that it is time, once again, for the U.S. Supreme Court to revisit this important matter, and they believe this act may bring about the best opportunity for this to occur.
Ivey commended the bill’s sponsors, state Rep. Terri Collins and Sen. Clyde Chambliss, “for their strong leadership on this important issue.”
“For the remainder of this session, I now urge all members of the Alabama Legislature to continue seeking the best ways possible to foster a better Alabama in all regards, from education to public safety,” Ivey concluded. “We must give every person the best chance for a quality life and a promising future.”
On Tuesday, Alabama’s Senate passed the Human Life Protection Act, 25-6. The bill has no exemptions for cases of rape and incest, and is due to take effect six months after the governor’s signature.
Liberty Counsel, a non-profit litigation firm, noted the bill reclassifies abortion as a Class A felony, punishable by up to 99 years in prison for abortionists. Women who undergo an abortion, however, “will not be criminally liable.”
The bill is intended to challenge the Supreme Court’s decision in Roe v. Wade, in which the high court invented a right to abortion, though none existed in the Constitution.
“The heart of this bill is to confront a decision that was made by the courts in 1973 that said the baby in the womb is not a person,” said Collins. “This bill addresses that one issue. Is that baby in the womb a person? I believe our law says it is. I believe our people say it is. And I believe technology shows it is.”