DENVER, Co. — Lawmakers in Colorado have rejected two bills that would have outlawed abortion in the state and criminalized those who kill infants in the commission of a crime against their mother.
H.B. 16-1113, also known as the “Protect Human Life at Conception Act,” was introduced by Rep. Stephen Humphrey, R-Windsor.
“It is the intent of the general assembly to make the practice of terminating the life of an unborn child illegal in the state of Colorado,” it reads.
“A person shall not knowingly administer to, prescribe for, procure for, or sell to a pregnant mother any medicine, drug or other substance with the specific intent of causing or abetting the termination of the life of an unborn human being,” the bill prohibits. “A person shall not knowingly use or employ any instrument or procedure upon a pregnant mother with the specific intent of causing or abetting the termination of the life of an unborn human being.”
On Thursday, the House Committee on Health, Insurance and Environment voted 7-6 to postpone the proposal indefinitely.
H.B. 1007, proposed by Rep. Janak Joshi, R-Colorado Springs, was also postponed indefinitely. It served as an addendum to current criminal law, that “[i]f the commission of any crime … is the proximate cause of death or injury to an unborn member of the species homo sapiens, the respective homicide and assault charges for that death or injury may be brought simultaneously with the underlying charges.”
“This bill is very straightforward,” co-sponsor Rep. Clarice Navarro, R-Pueblo, told the Aurora Sentinel. “It allows for the prosecutor to prosecute the individual who kills the unborn. After last year’s horrific incident in Longmont where a baby was cut from the womb of the mother and later died, this bill would allow for the prosecutor to have the option of prosecuting that disgusting act as a homicide.”
But groups like NARAL opposed the measure, stating that it was an underhanded way to ban abortion altogether.
“The alleged assailant in the Longmont case already faces multiple felonies and more than 100 years behind bars due to Colorado’s Unlawful Termination of Pregnancy Law passed in 2013,” Executive Director Karen Middleton told reporters.
However, as previously reported, mother Heather Surovick, who lost her eight-month-old unborn son Brady in July 2012 when she was struck by a drunk driver—who had been charged with DUI four other times—was told following her son’s death that the man would not be charged with murder because her baby was not considered a person.
“On top of the death of my son [and] planning his funeral, I find out that the man responsible for taking Brady—the death of Brady—is not being charged with it because the law says that Brady was not a person,” Surovik said. “Just because he didn’t take a breath, they say that Brady isn’t a person.”
Her efforts to pass “Brady’s Law” to criminalize acts that result in the death of an unborn child failed in the legislature.