Sen. Paul Scott filed 10 Senate Bills as of Thursday’s legislation deadline focused around health care, child facilities, hunting and abortion, just to name a few.
One of the bills filed by Scott, of Duncan, is in an attempt to strengthen Oklahoma’s Heartbeat Informed Consent Act “by providing a scientific definition of when life begins, with the first heartbeat” with Senate Bill 710, which is aimed at prohibiting abortions should the heartbeat of the embryo be audible.
“I am pro-life and believe in the sanctity of life. I don’t believe in abortions but since we can’t go against the federal government, we must do all we can within our constitutional rights. As a state, we can provide a clear, scientific definition that life begins with the first heartbeat,” said Scott.
SB 710 requires all abortion providers to follow the Heartbeat Informed Consent Act. Inside the legislation, Scott amends Section B. Should the amendment pass, the bill will change the law to require abortion providers to determine if a fetal heartbeat is present if the pregnancy is at least six weeks after fertilization. Previous legislation read eight weeks after fertilization.
Section B amendments continue on, though, and areas including asking the mother if she would like to listen to the heartbeat are removed. Taking these words place, instead, are “No physician shall perform an abortion if the physician determines the embryonic or fetal heartbeat is audible.”
“Our abortion laws are outdated and based on old technology and science. Roe v. Wade was settled 43 years ago,” Scott said. “Now doctors have the tools and knowledge to not only sustain life several weeks earlier than was possible back then but now they can even create life in the lab. Instead of offering to let the mother hear her baby’s heartbeat before she terminates its life as is current law, we need to fight for that baby and acknowledge that it is in fact a human being with the right to live.”
While nothing else in the legislation is changed, abortion would only be allowed if the heartbeat is inaudible, if the physician has attempted to make the heart beat audible for the woman and if the physician offers to make the heartbeat audible “at a subsequent date.”
Should the legislation pass, it will become effective Nov. 1, 2017.
The 2017 Legislative Session will reconvene on Monday, Feb. 6.
For more information on the House and Senate bills proposed, visit http://www.oklegislature.gov/AdvancedSearchForm.aspx.