The Alabama Senate Bill, SB301, passed the Senate 23-7, yet was not voted on in the House before the end of the session.
Last minute changes to the bill changed it from a personhood bill, which would have banned all abortions, to a ban of all surgical abortions and many chemical abortions.
If the bill had passed the House, it would have been the first time in state history that all surgical abortions were outlawed since Roe v. Wade.
The original text, introduced by Senator Phil Williams, read: "The term 'persons' as used in the Code of Alabama 1975, shall include any human being from the moment of fertilization or the functional equivalent thereof."
The amended text read: "The term 'persons' as used in the Code of Alabama 1975, shall include any human being from the moment of fertilization and implantation into the womb."
"SB301 started out on the right track, but it had a fatal flaw," says Jennifer Mason, spokesperson for Personhood USA. "The amended version of SB301 essentially stated that personhood begins at implantation--which we know is not the case. Embryology textbooks show that life begins at fertilization, not implantation."
Personhood USA applauds Senator Williams for fighting for SB301 and its original text, while certain to save lives, still falls short of the high standard and goals of Personhood rights for all innocent human beings.
The Alabama House passed HB18, the Pain-Capable Unborn Child Protection Act, which, according to the Alabama Department of Health, may have been able to save 79 babies in 2009. By contrast, SB301 would have saved 10,882 babies in 2009.
Ben DuPre, of Personhood Alabama and the Foundation for Moral Law, is now calling for a Constitutional Personhood Amendment to ensure that no child is left behind.
"While we were hoping for much more from this legislative session, we are excited to see the growth of the Personhood movement here in Alabama," says DuPre. "A Personhood bill had never been this close to passage before in Alabama. We urge our legislators to approve a constitutional amendment next year that protects, as persons, the sanctity of every human life at every stage of biological development, including fertilization."
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