This past week brought both disappointing news and positive developments for champions of human life. In Washington, D.C., the U.S. Senate failed to pass legislation that would require physicians to provide care to infants who survive an attempted abortion. While those who uphold the sanctity of life recoiled at the defeat of the federal “Born-Alive Bill,” we took heart from the passage of House Bill 126 in the Missouri House of Representatives.
This legislation, which has been described as the “strongest pro-life bill in the country,” now moves to the Missouri Senate for consideration. The omnibus bill combines several separate measures to provide wide-sweeping protections for the unborn in Missouri.
The “Right to Life of the Unborn Child Act” leaves no doubt about the Missouri General Assembly’s intention to protect the unborn. The measure declares the state of Missouri to be a “sanctuary of life” and that pregnant women and their unborn children will be protected to the full extent permitted by the Constitution of the United States, federal statutes and decisions by the United States Supreme Court.
The measure outlaws the abortion of any child once a fetal heartbeat has been detected, except in cases of medical emergency. Physicians who perform abortions beyond that stage of a child’s development could lose their medical license.
The “Missouri Stands for the Unborn Act” portion of the bill readies Missouri for the possible overthrow of the Roe v. Wade decision by the U.S. Supreme Court. In the event the federal court overturns its 1973 decision, which legalized abortion in America, Missouri would not allow the taking of any unborn life, except in extreme circumstances.
The House legislation also outlaws the abortion of any unborn child beyond 20 weeks of gestation. The “Late-Term Pain-Capable Unborn Child Protection Act” provides an exception for medical emergencies, but requires physicians to employ methods most likely to preserve the life of the child and provide immediate medical care for a child born as a result of an abortion.
Other provisions of HB 126 include a prohibition of “selective abortions” based on the sex or race of the infant or a diagnosis of Down syndrome. The bill also includes a provision that requires the consent of one parent and notification of all custodial parents before a minor may obtain an abortion. This measure is similar to Senate Bill 106, legislation which I introduced and has received approval by the Seniors, Families and Children Committee.
I commend my colleagues in the House of Representatives for putting forth this strong legislation to defend the lives of the unborn. I am a strong defender of the sanctity of human life and will always support legislation that protects innocent children. I look forward to working toward the House bill’s passage when the Senate takes up the measure.
A No-Drone Zone
My legislation to prohibit unmanned aircraft above correctional facilities and mental health facilities, Senate Bill 194, was perfected by the Senate this week. This measure makes it a felony to use a drone aircraft to deliver any article that could harm an inmate, patient or staff member of these facilities, or to transport a controlled substance inside the perimeter.
Agricultural Leaders of Tomorrow
It was my pleasure to visit with two residents of the 21st Senatorial District who are members of the 2019-2020 class of the Agricultural Leaders of Tomorrow program. ALOT is a two-year-long leadership training program for promising young adult agricultural professionals. Participants in the ALOT program attend 10 three-day training sessions in-state, a week-long seminar in Washington, D.C., and travel overseas for an international experience.
The two delegates from the 21st District are typical of the outstanding Missourians chosen to join ALOT. Jordan Bredhoeft raises hogs and farms 2,500 acres of corn and soybeans near Blackburn with his father and uncles. He has a degree in Agricultural Systems Management from the University of Missouri. Daniel Carpenter earned a degree in Agribusiness Management from the University of Missouri and was a member of the 2011 MU Tigers football team. Today he is a Pioneer sales representative and helps with the family livestock and row crop farm near Hardin.
As always, I appreciate hearing your comments, opinions and concerns. Please feel free to contact me in Jefferson City at 573-751-4302. You may also email me at firstname.lastname@example.org.