The abortion debate has hit a fever pitch in recent years, as Democrat lawmakers keep pushing pro-Choice policies while Republicans support pro-Life moves.
If you’re in the latter camp, you likely applaud bills like the Texas “heartbeat bill,” which clamps down hard on aborting babies with a detectable heartbeat.
Now, another largely red state has passed a very similar law.
It’s being called a “Texas-style” bill and it’s dubbed the “Oklahoma Heartbeat Act,” which was written up by GOP Senator Julie Daniels and state Rep. Todd Russ.
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This piece of legislation didn’t have any difficulty passing, either: it went through easily by a 68-12 count.
It had previously passed through the State Senate 33-11 and is now on the way to the desk of Gov. Kevin Stitt, who’s expected to sign it immediately.
The wording of the bill is clear (via The Daily Wire):
The text of the legislation states that ‘an abortion may not be performed or induced on a pregnant woman unless a physician has determined, in accordance with this section, whether the woman’s unborn child has a detectable fetal heartbeat.’
According to the bill, a heartbeat is described as “cardiac activity or the steady and repetitive rhythmic contraction of the fetal heart within the gestational sac.”
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Basically, this aligns with health experts who say a fetal heartbeat can be detected by around 6 weeks after gestation.
The law then says that a doctor can’t “knowingly perform or induce an abortion” once that heartbeat is detected (though there are exceptions for medical emergency).
It’s very much like the now-famous 6-week heartbeat bill signed in Texas, which was also supported by millions of pro-Life activists.
Both bills allow any private citizen to sue anyone who performs an abortion, or “aids and abets” in getting an abortion. The penalties are stiff, too:
It could lead to damages of up to $10,000 for each abortion performed, plus other “compensatory damages.”
While abortion supporters say this flies in the face of Roe v. Wade, those in the other camp will say it’s a moral victory — and one that everyone should celebrate.
And speaking of Roe vs. Wade, that long-time law could also be on the hot seat this year, which would undoubtedly cause even more polarization.