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Thu Apr 25, 2019, 03:06 AM

Tony Evers will veto 'born alive' abortion bill advanced by GOP lawmakers

The punishment to docs to so so so severe.

Tony Evers will veto 'born alive' abortion bill advanced by GOP lawmakers

Molly Beck, Milwaukee Journal Sentinel Published 5:00 a.m. CT April 23, 2019 | Updated 9:31 a.m. CT April 23, 2019


Abortions in Texas plummeted about 15 percent during the first year after approval of tough restrictions that the U.S. Supreme Court has since struck down a decline that activists say shows how hard it had become to get an abortion in America's second-largest state. (Photo: Associated Press)

MADISON Doctors who do not provide medical care to babies who are born alive after a failed abortion attempt could face life in prison under a Republican bill headed straight toward Gov. Tony Evers' veto pen.

The legislation came the same week North Carolina's Democratic governor vetoed a similar proposal and as Republican lawmakers nationwide are sending their liberal-leaning governors similar bills that could energize conservative voters especially heading into 2020 in swing states like Wisconsin.

"We wanted to reaffirm the fact that babies that survive abortions have the right to anything any other living, breathing individual in the state does," Assembly Majority Leader Jim Steineke, R-Kaukauna, said. "And doctors have the responsibility to care for that child as they would for any other person who was living and breathing."

Some abortion-rights advocates and doctors say the legislation leaves a false impression that the extremely rare scenario is common, but anti-abortion advocates say one time is too many.

The bill, co-authored and sponsored by Republican leaders of both houses, requires health care providers present during a failed abortion attempt "to exercise the same degree of professional skill, care, and diligence to preserve the life and health of the child as a reasonably diligent and conscientious health care provider would render to any other child born alive."

If a doctor or nurse fail to do so, and fail to admit the infant to a hospital, he or she could face felony charges and up to $10,000 in fines. Health care providers "intentionally causing the death of a child born alive" as a result of a failed abortion, could face life in prison.

Evers said he will not sign the bill because of existing protections and criminal penalties in state law. ....................................

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