Strength of an Alliance: Arizona Bill Bars Late-Term Abortions
- By Alan Sears
- Posted Apr 24, 2012
- No Comments »
The most essential work of the Alliance Defense Fund is spelled out in the first name of our ministry: Alliance. Our first and best resources are committed to bringing together Christian leaders and organizations in every arena to accomplish what none of us could do alone: keep a legal door open for the spread of the Gospel by effectively defending life, marriage and the family, and religious freedom.
Last November, I wrote to tell you of our successful defense – working closely with the Center for Arizona Policy, the Bioethics Defense Fund, a Life Legal Defense Foundation and other pro-life groups in the state – of Arizona’s Abortion Consent Act. The bill, passed by the state’s pro-life legislature and signed by its pro-life governor, prohibited non-physicians from performing surgical abortions, provided for women to receive full and accurate information at least 24 hours before an abortion, protected health care workers who object to performing or facilitating abortions, and required notarized parental consent for minors seeking abortions.
Not surprisingly, Planned Parenthood challenged the legislation in court. The state court of appeals, though, ruled that the Act was constitutional. The defeat was more than legal – it led to several Planned Parenthood “clinics” no longer performing abortions. As a result, the number of abortions performed in Arizona dropped dramatically over the last few months.
Last week, a similar alliance produced even more wonderful results at the Arizona legislature, where lawmakers passed HB 2036, The Mother’s Health and Safety Act, which:
- Prohibits all abortions after 20 weeks.
- Requires women to have an ultrasound at least 24 hours prior to an abortion.
- Establishes an informed consent website with facts on fetal development, risks of abortion, and services available.
- Requires doctors performing surgical abortions to have admitting privileges at a hospital within 30 miles of the abortion facility.
This is the beauty of an alliance – a bill already signed by Arizona Governor Jan Brewer … introduced and negotiated through the legislature by State Senator Nancy Barto and State Representative Kimberly Yee … strongly supported by church leaders statewide, including Bishop Thomas Olmstead of Phoenix, and by Christian ministries like the Center for Arizona Policy … and written in cooperation with ADF attorneys.
Most of these same allies were responsible for the passage last week of yet another Arizona bill, SB1009, which prohibits any school district or charter school from endorsing or providing financial or instructional program support to any program that doesn’t present childbirth and adoption as preferred options to elective abortion.
Please join me in giving thanks for God’s great mercy in blessing the efforts of a powerful alliance, and securing the successful passage of these two bills that will do so much to diminish the number of abortions in Arizona, saving countless lives. Join me, too, in giving thanks for these individuals and organizations that have come together and worked so diligently to preserve life in Arizona.
Author: Alan Sears