Georgia’s 20-week Abortion Ban to be Enforced

In a release hot off the press, the Georgia Life Alliance sent this statement about a half hour ago:

ATLANTA – On June 19, 2017, the Georgia Supreme Court upheld the dismissal of a challenge to Georgia’s 20-week fetal pain abortion bill that had kept the 2012 law passed by the Georgia General Assembly from being enforced for the last five years.  The fetal pain bill, so named because an unborn child can feel pain at 20 weeks, made most abortions after 20-weeks illegal.  During the lawsuit that lasted for the last five years, enforcement of this law has been on hold; but with the decision today, the law banning abortions after a fetus can feel pain is now the law of Georgia.

Camila Zolfaghari, executive director of Georgia Life Alliance said, “This is a victory for human life and human dignity. No child should have to feel the pain of being ripped apart, limb by limb in an abortion.”  The 20-week ban makes it a felony for a doctor to abort a fetus after 20 weeks.

The court dismissed the case on grounds of sovereign immunity stating that the Georgia Constitution bans lawsuits against the state except in cases where the state decides to waive that immunity.  In doing so, the Georgia Supreme Court avoided any decisions one way or the other about the constitutionality of the 20-week ban and the Court expressly noted other legal avenues that the plaintiffs could challenge the law’s constitutionality.

“We understand that life has triumphed today, but we still have a long way to go before every life, born and unborn, is fully valued and protected,” said Zolfaghari.  “Still we rejoice that the protection of human life grew just a little stronger today.  Every single life has value.”

Georgia Life Alliance is the Georgia affiliate of National Right to Life.

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