Second abortion-related measure headed to House floorby Dara Kam | April 4th, 2013
Abortion providers would be required to provide emergency care to infants born alive or face criminal penalties under a measure unanimously approved by the House Health and Human Services Committee this morning.
It’s the second abortion-related measure sent to the House floor in as many days. But, unlike a proposal that would make it a crime to perform an abortion based on the gender or race of the fetus, the “Infants Born Alive” provision unanimously passed today has the blessing of Planned Parenthood.
The measure would require that an infant born alive after a botched abortion would have to be transported to a hospital and be resuscitated and mirrors a federal law.
Rep. Cary Pigman, R-Avon Park, an emergency room doctor and the bill’s sponsor, said regulators have no idea if there is a problem with the issue in Florida now. But his bill (HB 1129) would require abortion providers to report the number of any infants born alive in other monthly reports.
“This bill is intended solely to guarantee all respect and humanity to infants born alive regardless of how they enter this world,” Pigman said.
Infants born alive after an abortion and which could survive would only occur in rare circumstances, Pigman said. The first is in partial-birth, or third-trimester abortions outlawed in Florida except when the mother’s life is in danger and ordered by two physicians. The second would be if an abortion is performed on a fetus whose gestation was erroneously dated by an ultrasound or other means, Pigman said.
The committee heard testimony from two Christian Family Coalition members who said they survived their biological mother’s attempts to abort them.
And Lillian Tamayo of the Florida Alliance of Planned Parenthood Affiliates, said her group withdrew its opposition to the measure after the sponsor struck a provision that would have automatically stripped the biological mother of her parental rights.
A similar bill is pending in a Senate committee.