Ind. Abortion Bill Heads To Governor; Local Reps Split On Vote
By Mike Perleberg
Indiana House of Representatives
(Indianapolis, Ind.) – Indiana Governor Mike Pence will decide if women in Indiana will be banned from an abortion because of the baby’s sex or a disability.
The Indiana House approved House Bill 1337 Wednesday on a 60-40 vote, concurring with amendments made to the bill in the Senate.
State Rep. Casey Cox’s proposal will now be sent to Pence for possible signature into law. The governor has not said whether he will sign the controversial plan.
Under the proposal, abortion providers could be sued for wrongful death and doctors performing an abortion could be sued if an abortion is performed only because of the fetus’ gender, a disease, defect or disorder.
The bill would also set restrictions on how fetal remains are disposed of, whether through miscarriage or abortion. Those remains can only be transported within the state or to another state for purposes of cremation or interment, otherwise a person could be charged with a class A misdemeanor.
Another provision banning the acquiring, receiving, selling, or transferring of fetal tissue is conservative Hoosier lawmakers’ response to last year’s national story about undercover videos in which Planned Parenthood employees discussed selling organs of aborted fetuses.
Critics say the restrictions are likely unconstitutional. A handful of Republican women argue that the proposal goes too far in that it could require pregnant women to endure complicated pregnancies that pose a danger to their health. State Rep. Cindy Ziemke (R-Batesville) was among a few Republicans joining Democrats in voting against the bill.
HB 1337’s supporters say they need to stand up for the most vulnerable. Southeast Indiana state representatives Randy Frye (R-Greensburg) and Randy Lyness (R-West Harrison) were among those voting for the bill.