WASHINGTON, D.C. – There have been a lot of bills on abortion introduced lately in congress following the Supreme Court decision to overturn Roe v. Wade. One local congressman created abortion legislation that has more than 120 congressional Republicans signed on to it.
Following the Supreme Court’s decision to strike down Roe, Democrats are trying to enshrine Roe into law.
“Democrats are taking action to defend the right to reproductive freedom,” said Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi (D- CA).
While the chances of legalizing abortion in congress look slim, Pennsylvania congressman Mike Kelly (R- PA) has his own proposal. It’s called the “Heartbeat Protection Act” which would prohibit abortions when a fetal heartbeat is detected.
“The Heartbeat Bill I’m certainly at a time in my life and when I take my grandchildren to the doctors the first thing that happens is somebody grabs your wrist and check to see if you have a pulse or puts a stethoscope to detect if you have a heartbeat,” said Rep. Kelly. “And the question is: why do they do that? That’s to see if you’re alive.”
The bill would require doctors to check for a heartbeat before performing an abortion. According to online medical sources, some heartbeats are detected as early as five to six weeks into the pregnancy. Those on the pro-choice side of the issue argue that around that same time is when the person finds out they’re pregnant. In this bill, it says doctors could face criminal penalties if they perform an abortion without checking for a heartbeat or aborting a child with a heartbeat detected.
“So it’s not designed to penalize a woman for that decision but it is telling doctors you have a responsibility up to that point because now it’s up to you if you’re going to continue through making that procedure,” said Rep. Kelly.
Kelly has stated before that the abortion decision should be left up to the states to decide but this legislation, if passed, would impact all states. We asked him about that.
“We have 50 states that they can on their own make decisions through their legislative bodies for those people who live in those states,” replied Rep. Kelly.
In Kelly’s “Heartbeat Bill” it would not apply to abortions that are necessary to save the life of the mother.