Oklahoma Governor Vetoes Bill to Criminalize Abortion

Fallin-compressedOKLAHOMA CITY, Okla. — The Republican governor of Oklahoma, while calling herself “the most pro-life governor in the nation,” has vetoed a bill that would have criminalized the performance of an abortion in the state and revoke the medical license of any physician who ends the life of an unborn child.

As previously reported, Sen. Nathan Dahm, R-Broken Arrow, introduced S.B. 1152 earlier this year, adding a provision to a section that regulates the way physicians are licensed in the state.

“Any physician participating in the performance of an abortion shall be prohibited from obtaining or renewing a license to practice medicine in this state,” it reads. “No person shall perform or induce an abortion upon a pregnant woman. Any person violating this section shall be guilty of a felony punishable by imprisonment for not less than one year nor more than three years in the state penitentiary.”

The bill provided an exception for the life of the mother.

Gov. Mary Fallin vetoed the measure on Friday, stating that the text was too subjective and would “would not withstand a criminal constitutional legal challenge.”

“The bill is so ambiguous and so vague that doctors cannot be certain what medical circumstances would be considered ‘necessary to preserve the life of the mother,’” Gov. Mary Fallin said in a statement. “The absence of any definition, analysis or medical standard renders this exception vague, indefinite and vulnerable to subjective interpretation and application.”

She also opined that the effort was not the proper way to end abortion—that it must be done by the reversal of Roe v. Wade.

“While I consistently have and continue to support a re-examination of the United States Supreme Court’s decision in Roe v. Wade, this legislation cannot accomplish that re-examination,” Fallin said. “In fact, the most direct path to a re-examination of the United States Supreme Court’s ruling in Roe v. Wade is the appointment of a conservative, pro-life justice to the United States Supreme Court.”

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Abortion advocacy groups applauded the veto.

“Governor Fallin did the right thing today in vetoing this utterly unconstitutional and dangerous bill,” Nancy Northup, president and chief executive of the center, said in a statement. “But the reality is countless Oklahoma women still face incredible obstacles to access safe and legal abortion when they’ve made the decision to end a pregnancy.”

But Dahm had said that one of the responsibilities of government is to protect life.

“Since I believe life begins at conception, it should be protected, and I believe it’s a core function of state government to defend that life from the beginning of conception,” he stated.

“If we take care of morality, God will take care of the economy,” supporter David Brumbaugh, R-Broken Arrow, also remarked.

Fallin reportedly attends Crossings Community Church in Oklahoma City.

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  • DLCraig

    Too bad… The governor has missed the opportunity to really take a courageous stand. Like her we have been attending a community church for about 3 years now. It’s full of absolutely wonderful people and even a few very strong Christians.

    However, the one thing the Community Church Movement has shown me is that it’s not very difficult to get large numbers of people to gather together under the common belief in, well, not too much in particular. And that’s the problem…

    • David Fisher

      Given that the bill passed 59-9, which gives you a sense of where the political strength in her state lies, I think this WAS a courageous stand.

      • DLCraig

        Taking on the liberal agenda driven supreme court would be far more courageous than simply buckling to the thought that choice is actually a choice…

        • David Fisher

          She’s in Oklahoma. The fact that a clearly unconstitutional bill like that passed overwhelmingly shows it’s not the liberal agenda she needs to be worried about. Doing the right thing in the face of the pressure from her party and her constituents took moral courage.

          • DLCraig

            Poor lamb… it’s never the right thing to vote in favor of killing innocent babies… Your childlike screed betrays a frenetic thought process.

            First you make the point the “she’s in Oklahoma” indicating that this is strictly a local issue. Then you make a claim to clarity regarding constitutionality which is federal.

            You close with a plea for the liberal agenda as a whole when it is only the liberal agenda of the SC that was in play and the courage it would have taken to take a stand for decency on the national stage and against all odds. The sort of courage you regard is the courage that runs and hides at the first whiff of a genuine challenge requiring a strong moral compass.

            No, thank you, that sort of courage is cheaply had by anyone and certainly not worthy of mention in any area of moral thought.

          • David Fisher

            Do we want to debate the ethics of abortion here and now, or are we talking about whether or not her actions took courage? You don’t have to agree with someone to admire their willingness to take a stand. Basically, her legislature, here entire party, is telling her one thing, and she had the integrity to say No, this is not how we do things.

          • David Fisher

            Also, your condescending tone does not reflect well upon you or the positions you’re representing.

          • acontraryview

            There has never been a vote in favor of killing innocent babies.

            To sign such a bill into law would have been foolish on the part of the governor. It would have resulted in nothing more than expensive lawsuits. Not one fewer abortion would have been performed. This whole thing was nothing more than a publicity stunt by the legislator.

  • Dan

    I don’t think she missed it; all she’s asking for is more clarity in order to prevent years of litigation and challenges. Why do we Christians whine when we don’t get our way instantly. Let the legislators roll up their sleeves and re-write the dang bill to add more clarity so as to avoid any unconstitutional suits from pro-abortion advocates.
    Quit whining and pray for God to give them wisdom on how to re-write the bill so that it will pass.

  • Reason2012

    Voting to allow sons and daughters to continue to be slaughtered by their own parents was NOT the right thing to do. They can change the wording afterwards if she has concerns. But to claim to be AGAINST abortion while vetoing a bill so that it continues says otherwise. She is now directly responsible for all sons / daughters slaughtered by their own parents until such time, if ever, a version of this bill she approves of ever makes it to her desk again.

  • acontraryview

    Smart move by the Governor. At least someone in OK government realizes that this would have only resulted in a colossal waste of taxpayer money while doing nothing to reduce the number of abortions.

    • Stogiebear

      Gays like abortion because they are incapable of having families themselves. It’s all about envy of normal people.

      • TheKingOfRhye

        “Now, speaking of consistency, Catholics, which I was until I reached the age of reason, Catholics and other Christians are against abortions, and they’re against homosexuals. Well who has less abortions than homosexuals?! Leave these f***ing people alone, for Christ sake! Here is an entire class of people
        guaranteed never to have an abortion! And the Catholics and Christians are just tossing them aside! You’d think they’d make natural allies. Go look for consistency in religion.” – George Carlin

  • http://www.bing.com/ Martin Smit

    Let’s not fight. Let’s not make evil people fight. Let’s just give them what they want.

  • robertzaccour

    The states are supposed to oppose unjust federal laws.