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Pennsylvanians For Human Life

Source: WorldNetDaily; December 9, 2002
Prolife Infonet news service

Georgia Bill Would Reqire "Death Warrant" for Abortions

Atlanta, GA -- Georgia legislators will introduce a bill early next month that refers to abortion as an "execution" and will require any mother seeking an abortion to go to court to obtain a death warrant.

''A mother would have to argue why the child should die and why her rights would take priority over the rights of the child,'' said Rep. Bobby Franklin, R-Marietta, who sponsored the legislation.

Once a mother filed for a death warrant, a guardian would be appointed to protect the rights of the unborn child. That guardian would be authorized to demand a jury trial in which the rights of the unborn child would be balanced against the rights of the mother seeking to have the ''execution''performed.

''It's a grotesque violation of a woman's right to choose," said Ebony Barley of the Georgia Abortion and Reproductive Rights Action League.

Some pro-life advocates say the approach won't help the cause and legislation in other states designed to help women seeking abortions understand fetal development and abortion's risks and dangers have proven extremely successfuol in reducing the number of abortions.

The court would be able to hold a trial within 30 days of the filing of the petition and a death warrant would be signed only if the court finds that the rights of the person seeking to have the abortion are superior to the right of the unborn child to live. Either side could appeal.

Franklin said, ''It's an attempt to restore the 14th Amendment due-process rights of the unborn.''

''It's a constitutional protection that we all have that's not being adhered to when it comes to dealing with unborn children,'' Franklin said. ''The first thing we do as state representatives is take an oath of office to support
the constitutions of the United States and the state of Georgia. Both ensure no person will be deprived of life or liberty without due process. We just want to make sure that's adhered to. Right now, the unborn child is losing his or her life without a trial.''

Barley said it's no coincidence the legislation is being introduced during the month that marks the 30th anniversary of the landmark Supreme Court decision that legalizes unlimited abortion. She points out the bill
stipulates it will be automatically repealed on the day following the day the U.S. Supreme Court issues a decision expressly declaring the overturn of Roe v. Wade.

''It's not outlawing abortion; it's just recognizing the child has rights,too,'' said Franklin.

The bill also mandates that no one can perform an abortion in the state without first obtaining a death warrant. If an abortion practitioner performs an abortion without a ''death warrant,'' he could be subject to up to five
years imprisonment and permanent revocation of his medical license. But,there's no penalty for women who have an abortion without first obtaining a ''death warrant.''

Franklin, who has co-sponsored other pro-life legislation in the past, said abortion practitioners have the most at stake because they're the ones who would be performing the abortion.

Franklin will officially introduce the bill at the beginning of the legislative session on Jan. 13. He said he hopes it will make it out of committee and then be called up for a vote by the whole House.

Ultimately, he hopes lawmakers in other states will be inspired by the concept of applying due-process rights to the unborn and propose similar legislation.

''I'm an optimist. I think if people who claim they support the concept of the Constitution, and also those who claim to support the sanctity of human life, if those people really do, we have a good shot at passing this
thing.''

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