FOR RELEASE: Thursday, February 19, 2009
FOR FURTHER INFO: Contact, Steve Lefemine, dir., Columbia Christians for Life,
http://www.christianlifeandliberty.net/ , http://www.righttolifeactofsc.net/
(803) 794-6273; PO Box 50358, Columbia, SC 29250
[COLUMBIA] – A South Carolina “Personhood” companion bill was introduced Wednesday, February 18 in the SC State Senate with 10 total sponsors, the most at introduction since the bill was first introduced 11 years ago in February 1998 (the SC “Personhood” bill has been active in the SC House each year since; while active in the SC Senate in five of those years).
The SC Senate (http://www.scstatehouse.gov/) has a total of 46 members.
SC Senate bill S.450, sponsored by Senator Lee Bright (R-Spartanburg), states (in language identical to the SC House “Personhood” bill, H.3526, introduced February 12):
“The right to life for each born and preborn human being vests at fertilization.” and “The rights guaranteed by Article I, Section 3 of the Constitution of this State [SC], that no person shall be deprived of life without due process of law, nor shall any person be denied the equal protection of the laws, vest at fertilization for each born and preborn human person."
( www.scstatehouse.gov/sess118_2009-2010/bills/450.htm )
The Attorney General of SC issued a legal opinion (March 2005) that this bill is constitutional on its face, though would likely be adjudicated when applied to abortion.
( www.christianlifeandliberty.net/Westlaw_Document_15_03_35_5392471.doc )
In 2005, the “Personhood” Bill passed the full South Carolina House of Representatives on April 13, 2005 (Second Reading) by a vote of Yeas-95 to Nays-18, albeit with an exception amended to the bill for cases of pre-born children conceived by the crime of rape. This denial of equal protection for the innocent pre-born child in cases of rape, fatally flawed the legal strategy of the bill (i.e., legal personhood) by failing to establish justice for all pre-birth humans.
( www.scstatehouse.gov/sess116_2005-2006/bills/3213.htm )
The 1973 US Supreme Court Roe v. Wade decision instructed that if “personhood” for the “fetus” was established at fertilization, with no exceptions, then the legal argument for abortion “collapses.”
“If this suggestion of personhood is established, the [abortion] case, of course, collapses, for the fetus’ right to life would then be guaranteed specifically by the [14th] Amendment.” ( Roe v. Wade, http://caselaw.lp.findlaw.com/scripts/getcase.pl?court=us&vol=410&invol=113 )
The SC “Personhood” Bill is constitutional, and meets the express requirement set forth by the Supreme Court in Roe v. Wade to establish personhood for the fetus, thus guaranteeing the right to life of this pre-birth human being, and ending decriminalized abortion in SC.
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