FRANKFORT, Ky. (WTVQ) – The state House Tuesday approved two pro-life bills, including one that sparked more than an hour of heated debate.
The hotly contested measure, HB 67, includes a constitutional amendment that would say the constitution does not secure or protect a right to abortion or funding of abortion.
“Here we go with another arrogant, patronizing piece of legislation to basically say that our women can’t think for themselves, that we want to insert ourselves into your personal private medical decision,” said Rep. Mary Lou Marizan, D-Louisville.
But Rep. Joe Fischer, R-Fort Thomas, countered that a measure approved in 2019 addressed many of opponents’ concerns, including allowing an abortion if the mother’s life is at risk.
He noted the current proposal is designed to protect the state from judges making decisions on abortion.
“Ladies and gentlemen the right to an abortion is nowhere to be found in the Kentucky Constitution or the United States Constitution, the right to kill unborn children is based on a false legal construct,” he said.
The measure still faces several hurdles. First it must be apperoved by the Senate. If that happens, it will go to a statewide referendum for voters to decide.
The other measure, HB 451, gives the attorney general more powers over regulations at abortion facilities, including the power to seek injunctions to stop clinics and the authority to pursue criminal and civil penalties.
Rep. Stan Lee, R-Lexington, said the bill is a response to former Attorney General Andy Beshear’s refusal to defend several abortion laws passed by the General Assembly.
“If this procedure has been good enough for years, then it’s good enough now. Kentucky women are bright and capable and do not need special prosecutor to monitor their healthcare,” said Rep. Maria Sorolis, D-Louisville.
This was a statement Lee disagreed with.
“While I understand some people don’t think Kentucky women need a special prosecutor, I will say that statistically probably half of these unborn babies that are killed, those little ladies need a special prosecutor,” he said.