The momentum for heartbeat bills is not slowing down. After a House of Representatives vote this afternoon, Missouri is now set to be the sixth state this year to pass either a heartbeat bill or even stricter legislation in a direct frontal assault on Roe. And once again, the law passed through the legislature by a supermajority margin — 110-44 in the House and 24-10 in the Missouri Senate. The Missouri bill bans abortion after eights weeks, and as CNN reports, it “includes exceptions for what it defines as medical emergencies, such as cases when the mother’s life is at risk or she is facing serious permanent injury, but not for pregnancies that are the result of rape or incest.”
It’s interesting to me that the avalanche of (mainly online) outrage at these state heartbeat laws often glides right over their consistent, huge margins of legislative support. Look at these numbers in the lower house and upper house, respectively:
-Alabama: 74-3 and 25-7;
-Georgia: 92-78 and 34-18
-Kentucky: 71-19 and 31-6
-Mississippi: 78-37 and 34-14
-Ohio: 56-40 and 19-13
Majorities this lopsided aren’t the result of men oppressing women, but rather women and men joining together to expressed shared political goals and engage in united cultural activism. Majorities this lopsided demonstrate that in these states, at least, there is nothing “extreme” about the laws they passed.
When New York passed its own, very liberal, abortion law it did so by similarly large margins — 92-47 in the Assembly and 38-24 in the Senate. Americans are sorting themselves into different communities with different cultural values, but only progressive communities have the legal ability to define and protect human life in a manner consistent with their deepest beliefs. This divergence worsens the Roe wound on the American body politic. Entire American states, representing tens of millions of American citizens, are rapidly rejecting abortion and seeking to establish communities that protect their most vulnerable members. As state after state declares its intentions, perhaps the Supreme Court will finally hear the call, recognize that the Founders had no intention to establish a right to kill a child, and let Kentucky be Kentucky and New York be New York.