WASHINGTON — South Carolina Republicans are pushing legislation that would make a person who has an abortion subject to the state’s murder laws, which include the death penalty.
He South Carolina Equal Prenatal Protection Act «would ensure that an unborn child who is a victim of homicide receives the same protection under the state’s homicide laws.» The bill would define a «person» as an «unborn child at each stage of development from fertilization to birth.»
Under South Carolina law, people convicted of murder he may face the death penalty or a minimum of 30 years in prison.
The bill provides for some exceptions, including if the mother had an abortion «because she was compelled to do so by threat of imminent death or serious bodily harm.» It also provides an exception if a licensed physician performs the abortion to prevent the death of a pregnant woman, but «results in accidental or unintentional injury or death to her unborn child when all reasonable life-saving alternatives were attempted.» of the unborn baby.» none were available.»
The measure, whose main sponsor is state representative rob harris, does not include any exceptions for rape or incest. Before serving in the Legislature, Harris worked as a registered nurse for nearly three decades, according to her campaign website.
Republicans in the South Carolina House introduced the legislation in January and it was referred to the state House Judiciary Committee, which has yet to consider it. More than a dozen Republican lawmakers are listed as sponsors of the bill.
The Republican Party has a majority in the South Carolina House and Senate. A similar bill has not been introduced in the upper house. Republican Henry McMaster is the state’s governor.
While the South Carolina House has not yet acted on the measure, has received significant attention as other states impose more restrictions related to abortions. A Texas judge will hold a hearing Wednesday in a lawsuit challenging the Food and Drug Administration’s approval of mifepristone, one of two drugs that can be used to terminate a pregnancy.