Kentucky Republicans in total control of the government for the first time in 95 years, have moved to gut the reproductive rights of women.
According to a report from the Courier Journal, one of 11 bills being considered is a 20-week abortion ban. The Journal reports that GOP Senate President Robert Stivers said women give up their reproductive rights when they allow themselves to get pregnant.
From the Courier Journal:
Sen. Brandon Smith, R-Hazard, is sponsoring the bill to ban abortions after the 20th week. He said it’s based on the assertion that fetuses can feel pain after 20 weeks. Smith said the bill makes exceptions to the 20-week ban in cases of rape and incest and when the mother’s life is in danger.
The bill applies fines and suspensions to doctors for violating the ban but no penalty to the pregnant woman, he said.
In a statement to reporters, Stivers said mothers have a “choice early on to make a decision to conceive or not conceive. But once conception starts, there becomes another life involved. And the legislature has its ability to control how that life may proceed or how it would be terminated.”
Republican House Speaker Jeff Hoover added that there was “overwhelming sentiment” in favor of the ban and predicted that it would be passed by the end of the week.
“Legislation about bans like this pose a serious threat because they ignore women’s health needs in individual circumstances,” ACLU of Kentucky spokesperson Amber Duke told the Journal. “We believe that women deserve dignity and should have the right to make personal and private medical decisions without interference from politicians.”
The GOP-controlled Senate also is expected to pass legislation that would ban union membership as a requirement for employment.
Featured image via the Courier Journal