Idaho Republicans want to clarify abortion ban


Confusion over whether doctors in Idaho can treat pregnancy complications such as ectopic pregnancies without violating the state’s criminal abortion ban could be resolved under a new bill.

Senator Scott Herndon (R-Sagle)’s proposal defines abortion as the intentional killing of a live fetus or embryo in the womb.

According to Herndon, such adjustments specifically address ectopic pregnancies, in which a fertilized egg implants outside the uterus and can cause life-threatening bleeding if left untreated.According to the Mayo Clinic.

He said his bill would allow abortion not only when the fetus dies in the womb, but in those circumstances as well.

“This makes it clear that doctors are never at risk of criminal penalties if the baby is already dead,” Herndon said.

Those who care for a pregnant woman in an attempt to save her life but unintentionally kill her unborn child in the process are also exempt from prosecution under the measure.

Herndon said his definition doesn’t include IUDs and emergency contraceptives like Plan B as abortion-causing.

Herndon also tried to introduce legislation to remove the abortion exemption in cases of rape and incest, but abortions to save the mother’s life were still permitted.

He said it was “auspicious” to celebrate the life and achievements of civil rights icon Martin Luther King Jr. on Monday.

“For 13 years he’s been promoting civil rights for people based on certain characteristics, and he’s doing the same thing,” Herndon said, adding that fetuses conceived for alleged rape and incest are not legal. are not treated equally under

Senate Minority Leader Melissa Wintrow (D-Boise) rejected the comparison, saying Herndon’s bill would force teenage girls to conceive to term, even if they were raped by family members. .

Herndon said the state does not “force” anyone to do anything.

“These are just natural circumstances. Idaho doesn’t control it,” he said.

“Some people describe the situation you’re talking about as an opportunity to have a child in such a terrifying situation if rape really happened.”

Herndon’s attempt to eliminate these abortion exceptions failed, and was supported only by Senator Ben Touse (R-Coeur d’Alene). His other bill still needs public hearings before it reaches the Senate floor.

Follow James Dawson on Twitter @Radio Dawson See more local news.

Copyright 2023 Boise State Public Radio





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