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A Positive Response to Proposed 'Fetal Pain Bill'

Rep. Doug McKillip of the 115th district introduced House Bill 954 last week.


When Republican Doug McKillip of the 115th district introduced House Bill 954 last week, an immediate positive response came from those of us who are pro-life advocates.

On Thursday, Feb. 9, Rep. McKillip gave his personal testimony as to why he had changed his mind regarding the issue of life. Online Athens reported that McKillip stated, “I became a Christian in '09, you start reading the Bible and you realize life begins at conception.”

I was present a few weeks ago, when, along with others, I heard Rep. McKillip give a speech where he shared the change that had taken place in his life and thinking after he became a Christian and started reading the Bible. The five-page bill also has others who signed on to support the bill — Rep. Terry England of the 108th district, who is also chairman of the House Appropriations Committee, signed as a co-sponsor. Along with England and McKillip, representatives Doug Collins of the 27th, Mark Hamilton of the 23rd and Donna Sheldon of the 105th district all affixed their names in support of the bill.

House Bill 954 was assigned to the House Judiciary Non-Civil Committee for hearings to be conducted on the bill, which as yet has not been announced.  Mike Griffin, field director for Georgia Right to Life, encouraged calls to committee members in support of a hearing on this bill, which would outlaw abortions after the 20th week.

“Scientific evidence supports the reality that a pre-born child feels the pain of abortion as early as 20 weeks,” Griffin said.

With the passage of this bill, Georgia would become the seventh state in the nation to pass what has come to be called a “fetal pain bill” that will ban abortion after the child in the womb can feel pain, which is determined to be the 20th week.

With the support of the various leaders of the House of Representatives, we have reason to be hopeful that we will see this significant legislation passed during this session of the General Assembly. Passage of the bill is not guaranteed, however, as various abortion advocates immediately began to attack McKillip for his change in position on the life issue. McKillip points out that the bill does include exceptions to save the life of the baby or the mother but not for rape or incest.

New medical technology has become available since the ruling of Roe v. Wade by the United States Supreme Court that allowed for legalized abortion. Since the ruling by the Supreme Court, more than 50 million babies have been aborted in our nation. The issue of life and when it begins is a long debated issue, but for those of us who believe that life begins at conception any progress on the subject is welcomed. From where I stand, I applaud the courage of the men and women willing to stand on their convictions about life and the need for clearly defined legislation about life.

Will new medical technology help change minds about pro-life issues? Tell us what you think in comments.

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