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South Carolina State Senate subcommittee amends Born Alive bill

May 6, 2009

To: SCCL E-Mail Tree
From: Holly Gatling, Executive Director
Subject: Senate subcommittee amends Born Alive bill

Senate Pannel Amends Born Alive Bill

(COLUMBIA, S.C.) May 6, 2009 — A State Senate subcommittee unanimously voted Wednesday to amend the Born Alive Infant Protection Act and send it on to the full Senate Judiciary Committee. South Carolina Citizens for Life and the National Right to Life Committee are reviewing the amendments to determine if they are consistent with the intent of the federal legislation signed by former President George W. Bush in 2002.

In February, the S.C. House passed the legislation without amendment by a vote of 105-5.

The Born-Alive Infant Protection Act says that any baby born alive in South Carolina, including an infant who survives an abortion, is a person under South Carolina law. Without such a law, a child who survives an abortion legally can be treated as medical waste — the product of an incomplete abortion.

One of the most notorious cases of an infant surviving an abortion occurred in South Carolina in 1974. The aborted baby boy lived 20 days. Subsequent attempts to prosecute the abortionist, Jesse Floyd, (now deceased) were thwarted by the U.S. 4th Circuit Court of appeals. According to the court, the “fetus in this case was not a person whose life state law could legally protect.”

In 2003 another bizarre incident occurred involving a newborn child. The State newspaper reported that a “fetus” from Clarendon Memorial Hospital ended up at a Columbia laundry company. A blanket enveloped the baby whose gestational age was estimated to be 20 weeks.
The Feb. 5, 2003, article did not contain information about whether the baby was born alive, however it is possible. Children born at 19 weeks have survived and thrived. The point is the body of this infant was treated as an object to be discarded and not as a human person.

When President Bush signed the Born-Alive Infants Protection Act on August 5, 2002, he said, “This important legislation ensures that every infant born alive — including an infant who survives an abortion procedure — is considered a person under federal law.” He added, “Today, through sonograms and other technology, we can see clearly that unborn children are members of the human family, as well.”

The same principle should apply under South Carolina law.

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