CV NEWS FEED // Florida lawmakers have proposed two bills that would ban most abortions after 15 weeks.
“[State] Rep. Erin Grall (R–Indian River & St. Lucie Counties) and state Senator Kelli Stargel (R–Lake & Polk Counties) simultaneously filed bills that will effectively outlaw the vast majority of abortions that take place here in Florida after 15 weeks gestation,” according to an email from the pro-life organization Florida Voice for the Unborn.
The bills, House Bill 5 and Senate Bill 146, are “modeled after” the Mississippi 15-week abortion ban currently before the Supreme Court in the case of Dobbs v. Jackson Women’s Health.
While Gov. Ron DeSantis, R-FL, has indicated he would support such a move and the two bills have some support among the leadership of Florida’s legislature, “getting a 15-week abortion ban enacted into law here in Florida is far from a ‘slam-dunk,’” the email explained.
“I anticipate that pro-abortion legislators will do everything they can to stall and obstruct these bills – and try to convince the Republican, pro-life leadership that the bills should ultimately be ‘watered-down,’” warned Andrew Shirvell, founder and executive director of Florida Voice for the Unborn. “Our job is to encourage pro-life legislators to stand-up for the unborn by passing the 15-Week Abortion Bill – and to advocate for the inclusion of as many pro-life protections in the bill as possible.”
House Bill 5 is scheduled for its first hearing Wednesday, January 19, from 1 to 3 pm. “Now that the subcommittee members have returned to their offices, they need to hear from pro-lifers (like YOU!) right away,” Shirvell wrote.
He went on to provide a few details about the contents of the bill:
The bill states: “A physician may not perform a termination of pregnancy if the physician determines the gestational age of the fetus is more than 15 weeks…” (lines 220-222).
The bill states: “‘Gestation’ means the development of a human embryo or fetus as calculated from the first day of the pregnant woman’s last menstrual period.” (lines 211-213).
The bill allows for an exception when “necessary to save the pregnant woman’s life or avert a serious risk of substantial and irreversible physical impairment of a major bodily function of the pregnant woman other than a psychological condition.” (lines 226-230; 233-237).
The bill also permits an abortion when “the fetus has not achieved viability under s. 390.01112 and two physicians certify in writing that, in reasonable medical judgment, the fetus has a fatal fetal abnormality.” (lines 239-242).
The bill defines a “fatal fetal abnormality” as “a terminal condition that, in reasonable medical judgment, regardless of the provision of life-saving medical treatment, is incompatible with life outside the womb and will result in death upon birth or imminently thereafter.” (lines 206-210).
Shirvell also provided a brief set of talking points for citizens to use when they contact their elected officials to encourage the passage of House Bill 5:
Pass House Bill 5 because it will prevent thousands of late-term abortions that currently result in the deaths of unborn children who are capable of feeling pain and have beating hearts.
House Bill 5 rightly does not contain exceptions for rape and incest. The manner in which unborn children are conceived is irrelevant. A child conceived by rape or incest is no less deserving of protection under the law than any other child and should not receive the death penalty for the crimes of his or her father.
“Please utilize the above talking points and contact as many members of the House’s Professions & Public Health Subcommittee as possible,” Shirvell wrote, adding that readers could email the members as a group or individually. He also recommended those who do write in emails include a simple subject line such as “Pass House Bill 5 (Prohibition of Abortions After 15 Weeks).”
Shirvell also encouraged calling the subcommittee members.
Below are the office phone numbers and email addresses of the members on the Professions & Public Health Subcommittee:
Chair Will Robinson (R): (850) 717-5071
Vice Chair John Snyder (R): (850) 717-5082
Democratic Ranking Member Carlos Smith (D): (850) 717-5049
Alex Andrade (R): (850) 717-5002
Kristen Arrington (D): (850) 717-5043
David Borrero (R): (850) 717-5105
Anna Eskamani (D): (850) 717-5047
Juan Fernandez-Barquin (R): (850) 717-5119
Sam Garrison (R): (850) 717-5018
Mike Gottlieb (D): (850) 717-5098
Randy Maggard (R): (850) 717-5038
Stan McClain (R): (850) 717-5023
Michele Rayner (D): (850) 717-5070
Alex Rizo (R): (850) 717-5110
Bob Rommel (R): (850) 717-5106
Tyler Sirois (R): (850) 717-5051
Kelly Skidmore (D): (850) 717-5081
Kaylee Tuck (R): (850) 717-5055
Will.Robinson@myfloridahouse.gov; John.Snyder@myfloridahouse.gov; Carlos.Smith@myfloridahouse.gov; Alex.Andrade@myfloridahouse.gov; Kristen.Arrington@myfloridahouse.gov; David.Borrero@myfloridahouse.gov; Anna.Eskamani@myfloridahouse.gov; JuanF.Barquin@myfloridahouse.gov; Sam.Garrison@myfloridahouse.gov; Michael.Gottlieb@myfloridahouse.gov; Randy.Maggard@myfloridahouse.gov; Stan.McClain@myfloridahouse.gov; Michele.Rayner@myfloridahouse.gov; Alex.Rizo@myfloridahouse.gov; Bob.Rommel@myfloridahouse.gov; Tyler.Sirois@myfloridahouse.gov; Kelly.Skidmore@myfloridahouse.gov; Kaylee.Tuck@myfloridahouse.gov