The Governor of Montana, Republican Greg Gianforte, is likely to soon sign at least two pro-life bills into law, though four bills have been passed. As a ministry with a pro-life component, Focus on the Family is a strong supporter of women and families.
One of those laws is Montana’s Born-Alive Infant Protection Act, which argues that “the state of Montana has a paramount interest in protecting all human life.” As with many other born-alive bills, this one will protect babies after a failed abortion attempt by requiring abortionists to provide life-saving care.
According to the text of the bill, “It is not an infringement on a woman’s right to terminate her pregnancy for this state to assert its interest in protecting an infant whose live birth occurred as the result of an abortion; and without proper legal protection, newly born infants who have survived abortions have been denied appropriate lifesaving or life-sustaining medical care and treatment and have been left to die.”
If an abortionist that fails to do this, they could be guilty of a felony and liable for a fine that should “not exceed $50,000 and shall be imprisoned in a state prison for a term of not less than 2 years and not more than 40 years.”
Emails show that Gov. Gianforte has been involved in the bill, with his policy director acting as one of its drafters.
Gov. Gianforte has also publicly voiced his support for the bill, stating, “I also urge the Legislature to send me the Born-Alive Infant Protection Act. These are necessary, compassionate measures where we should be able to find common ground and I will sign both of them to law.”
Though the governor is supportive, the bill is technically a referendum and will go to the people for a vote.
Gianforte has also told state legislators that he will sign another bill that will ban abortion after 20 weeks. Known as House Bill 136 or the “Pain-Capable Unborn Child Protection Act,” it would ban abortion after researchers believe a preborn baby can begin to feel pain. It supports this argument by outlining a variety of scientific discoveries about how preborn babies react in the womb to painful stimuli, like pulling away from a medical instrument, releasing stress hormones and the use of anesthesia for preborn babies if surgery is performed in the womb.
According to the bill’s text, “Whereas, the state asserts a compelling state interest in protecting the lives of unborn children from the stage at which substantial medical evidence indicates that they are capable of feeling pain; and Whereas, an abortion occurring later in pregnancy may increase the risk to the woman of the occurrence of infection, sepsis, heavy bleeding, or a ruptured or perforated uterus.”
A violation of the bill could result in a felony for the abortionist.
In addition, the bill also states that an abortion can only be performed by a “licensed physician or physician’s assistant.”
There are two other pro-life bills making their way through the legislature, but the governor’s support hasn’t been as clear. The first is House Bill 171, which would ban abortionists from prescribing the abortion pill via telemedicine, and House Bill 140, which would require that abortion clinics show women the ultrasound image of the baby before the abortion.
Protecting life is incredibly important and Focus on the Family has been a passionate voice for preborn babies for over four decades. It’s encouraging to see states like Montana do what they can to protect vulnerable babies and women.
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