Oklahoma Legislature Considers Anti-Abortion Laws
In three states so far, the “personhood” movement has put the question to the voters: ‘Does life begin at conception?’ All three times, the measure has failed. In Oklahoma, there’s two different proposals in the House and Senate that deal with when life begins.
By a vote of 34-8 on Wednesday, the Oklahoma state Senate passed a bill declaring that life begins at conception. It gives fetuses and embryos all the “rights, privileges, and immunities” that every other state resident has. Senator Brian Crain (R-Tulsa) says the bill will not restrict stem cell therapy, or make birth control illegal. The Oklahoma State Medical Association is opposed to the legislation, saying it would have unintended consequences. The House has yet to take action on the bill.
A separate bill in the Oklahoma House, sponsored by Representative Mike Reynolds (R-Oklahoma City), would put to voters an amendment to the state’s Constitution that would define life as the moment “biological development” begins. It would outlaw abortion, birth control, and in vitro fertilization that resulted in fertilized cells dying. It would not provide any exception in the case of rape or incest. That bill is awaiting action in the House. Critics of the personhood movement say it doesn’t stop abortions, but only increases the access and quality of care.
We want to know what you think. Should embryos and fetuses be guaranteed a right to life? Comment below, and we’ll read some of the thoughts on air.