Abortion bill flounders in a close vote

Controversial legislation won’t take affect – yet

Colorado lawmakers moved to postpone controversial abortion Bill 143 indefinitely in a four-three vote.

Senate Bill 143 proposed to ban all abortions in Colorado, except when the life of the pregnant woman is at risk. This would include banning abortions to women who have been victims of rape and/or incest. Any doctors who performed abortions outside of these lines would face a third degree felony that could carry a prison term up to 12 years.

Bill 143 was introduced by Senator Scott Renfroe, a R-Greeley, and Representative Kent Lambert, R-Colorado Springs, on Jan. 22, 2007. They introduced this bill to protect the sanctity of human life in the state of Colorado.

However, issues have arisen over the constitutionality of a bill like this. According to the famous Roe v. Wade U.S. Supreme Court case, each woman has a constitutional right to an abortion during the first six months of pregnancy. The state cannot interfere with a woman’s right to terminate her pregnancy; it is her freedom of choice.

“If a woman is not free to choose her reproductive rights, she is not free. Therefore, none of us are free,” said Warren Hern, M.D., of the Boulder Abortion Clinic.

Dr. Hern founded the Boulder Abortion Clinic in 1975 and has been providing safe and confidential abortions for women since 1973. He said suppressing women has become a political power tool for republicans and bill 143 would take away the freedom of women.

Lately, however, some state legislatures have been creating loop holes to the Roe v. Wade case. Bill 143 was largely modeled after the South Dakota bill 1215 that passed, but later was defeated by referendum, on Feb. 22, 2006.

“I feel incredibly saddened today; this is a step backward in a country full of forward thinkers,” said Megan Kasch, a senior sociology and women’s studies major.

Kasch said abortions will never just stop. Even though they may be outlawed, it will not stop them for occurring. She said having legal abortions protects a woman’s health and safety.

“You can take away the legalization, but not the concept,” Kasch said.

Christian Challenge Director Bobby Pruett, has been with CU for almost 19 years. His organization believes in changing the world through God-honoring relationships.

Although Pruett has not been acquainted with the bill, he does believe that any bill that is going to allow children to live is a good one.

Pruett said we have let abortion laws in this country go too far.

“We live in a culture of death for children in America today because of abortions,” Pruett said.

Abortion is not something Pruett can support because he believes life starts at conception.

“Even a child in the womb has been made in the eyes of God,” Pruett said.

This bill, if approved, will question medical decisions made by licensed, trained physicians in determining necessary, legal medical procedures. Dr. Hern feels this should be of major concern. He said there are much larger issues than him facing jail time, for example, the woman’s safety and choices.

CU Independent

The CU Independent, or CUI for short, is the student news outlet for the University of Colorado at Boulder. We cover news, sports, politics, opinion, arts and entertainment and more. Our mission is to provide news and commentary that's for students and by students — about the things we care about.

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