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Calvin Freiburger
Calvin Freiburger

New York legislature votes to legalize abortion up to birth, let non-doctors commit abortions

ALBANY, New York, January 22, 2019 (LifeSiteNews) – Both chambers of the New York state legislature voted Tuesday on legislation to enshrine a “fundamental right” to abortion in state law and eliminate protections for preborn babies until birth, in votes set to mark the anniversary of Roe v. Wade.

The state Senate voted 38-24 in favor of the so-called “Reproductive Health Act” Tuesday evening, the Albany Times-Union reports, a bill that has repeatedly cleared the state Assembly in years past but been blocked by the formerly-Republican Senate. Following the Senate vote, the Assembly passed it 92-47.

The bill declares that “Every individual who becomes pregnant has the fundamental right to choose to carry the pregnancy to term, to give birth to a child, or to have an abortion,” erases the state’s recognition of preborn babies older than 24 weeks as potential homicide victims, removes abortion from the penal code entirely, and allows licensed health practitioners other than full doctors to commit abortions.

“We have a president who’s made it very, very clear that he wants to overturn Roe v. Wade,” Senate Majority Leader Andrea Stewart-Cousins declared before the vote. “Today, here in New York, we are saying no […] and we’re not just saying no. We’re saying that here in New York, women’s health matters. We’re saying here in New York, women’s lives matter. We’re saying here in New York, women’s decisions matter.”

The Times-Union suggests the bill would allow “late-stage” abortions only if the mother’s “health” is endangered or if the baby is deemed non-viable, but the New York State Right to Life Committee warns that the bill would go much further in practice.

Declaring abortion a “fundamental right” opens the door to invalidating “any limits on abortion” and “mandat[ing] that everyone take part in the culture of death,”

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