Proposed Georgia Law: Death Penalty for Abortions

...and miscarriages, too, maybe
By Evann Gastaldo,  Newser Staff
Posted Feb 24, 2011 8:16 AM CST
Updated Feb 27, 2011 5:40 PM CST
Georgia State Rep. Bobby Franklin Wants to Make Miscarriages, Abortions Punishable by Death
A framed copy of the Ten Commandments sits on the desk of State Sen. Bobby Franklin following a legislative session at the Georgia Capital, Thursday, Jan. 27, 2011 in Atlanta.   (AP Photo/David Goldman)

Legislatively speaking, some might say this year has been tough on women (see here, here, and here), but Jen Phillips thinks she’s found the bill that takes the cake: In Georgia, State Rep. Bobby Franklin wants to criminalize not just abortions—but miscarriages as well. His 10-page bill would make any “prenatal murder” a felony punishable by death or life in prison—and that includes miscarriages, in the event the woman cannot prove that there was "no human involvement whatsoever in the causation" of her miscarriage, Phillips reports in Mother Jones.

Franklin—who’s known for introducing unconventional bills and has also proposed calling rape and domestic violence victims “accusers” instead of “victims”—doesn't define "human involvement" in the bill. That could be a problem, Phillips notes, since doctors still don’t know exactly what causes miscarriages. The bill would also mandate that women must protect their fetuses from "the moment of conception." (Meanwhile, a Nebraska state senator proposes a bill that would make it legal to kill abortion doctors; click here to read.)

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