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Nebraska Governor Ricketts expected to soon sign law banning the dismemberment of living unborn babies

by | Aug 14, 2020

By Dave Andrusko

Editor’s note. As we were about to post NRL News Today stories for Friday, Gov. Ricketts tweeted he will sign the bill Saturday in a ceremony between 11 a.m.-12 noon CDT.

On Thursday, when Nebraska’s pro-life legislators foiled the last pro-abortion attempt to derail a ban on the dismemberment of living unborn babies, it was reassuring indeed that the governor on whose desk the bill now rests is not only solidly pro-life but had written a column back in March titled “Ending the Disgrace of Dismemberment Abortion.”

In that post Gov. Pete Ricketts began with this ringing affirmation of the culture of the Cornhusker state:

Nebraska is a pro-life state that respects the dignity of human life.  You can see it in everything from how Nebraskans care for their neighbors to how legislators fight to protect preborn babies.  While we have made great strides over the years, we have more work to do.  

He then added,

You may be surprised to learn this: It is still legal in Nebraska to perform dismemberment abortions.

But it won’t be for long. Gov. Ricketts is expected to sign LB814 into law in the very near future.

LB 814 was the top legislative priority of Nebraska Right to Life, NRLC’s state affiliate.

“NRLC is deeply grateful to Sen. Geist who stood up fearlessly for defenseless unborn children,” said Ingrid Duran, NRL Director of State Legislation. “We coordinated closely with Nebraska Right to Life Executive Director Julie Schmit-Albin  whose tireless work helped make this important victory possible.”

When LB 814 becomes law, Nebraska will join 12 other states in expressing their revulsion at this hideous form of abortion. Those states are Kansas, Oklahoma, West Virginia, Mississippi, Alabama, Louisiana, Arkansas, Texas, Kentucky, Ohio, North Dakota, and Indiana.

State Sen. Suzanne Geist introduced LB814 back in January. “Twenty-one state senators joined the legislation as co-sponsors upon its introduction, with another four joining later,” the Catholic News Agency reported.

LB 814 passed with comfortable margins but not until the full legislature, on a vote of 30-8, pulled the bill out of the Judiciary Committee, which was deadlocked. (Nebraska is unique in that it has  a unicameral legislature—one house—so everything happen in that one legislative body.)

Pro-abortionists had threatened to filibuster and that’s exactly what they did. Thirty-three voters were needed to break through. On August 5, after three hours of intense debate, supporters garnered 34 votes on a motion to end the filibuster. There were other maneuvers but yesterday’s final vote was 33-8.

Along the way, pro-abortion Senator Ernie Chambers challenged the proposed law’s constitutionality on multiple grounds. Nebraska Attorney General Doug Peterson released an opinion in response, brilliantly explained why LB 814 was constitutional [https://d1vmz9r13e2j4x.cloudfront.net/NET/misc/NewAgOpinion-3514.pdf].

Peterson answered Chambers’ assertions one by one, beginning with the most important. LB 814 did not ban “the D&E (dilation and evacuation) procedure” for abortion.

It simply requires that the unborn child not be alive to experience the horrors of a “technique” that tears and pulverizes living unborn human beings, rips heads and legs off of tiny torsos as the defenseless child bleeds to death.

Gov. Ricketts, in his March 2 column, said it best when he quoted Dr. Kathi Aultman ,a retired, board-certified Ob/Gyn and a fellow of the American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists, who had both performed abortions, including dismemberment abortions, and herself had undergone an abortion.

Dr. Aultman testified at the Legislature’s hearing on LB 814 in support of the bill.  “A major benefit of this legislation is that it will spare mothers the agony and guilt of knowing that they consented to a procedure which caused their child to be torn limb from limb while it was alive,” she said. “It also protects medical personnel from the emotional trauma of knowing they assisted in this gruesome procedure on a live baby.”

Categories: Legislation
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