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Abortion Bill Clears Final Legislative Committee

February 21st, 2022 by Mike Vasilinda

The Florida Senate Rules Committee today teed up a new fifteen week abortion ban for a vote by the full Senate, where the measure is almost certainly going be approved and sent to the Governor. But as Mike Vasilinda tells us, the bill has already faced a bumpy path that is likely to continue.

On January 28th, Public speakers at the House Health Care Appropriations Committee were given just 30 seconds to speak. Tensions boiled. One speaker refused to leave the podium, so she was escorted away by the Sargent at Arms.

”I’m here to say we will not stand for the passing….”

The room was eventually cleared and the 15 week ban was approved.

And  After hours and hours  of debate, as the full House was prepared to vote, sponsor Erin Grall was interrupted. 

“Life remains a life whether…”

Chants broke out in the gallery.

We’ll never be defeated.” 

25 were cited for trespassing and banned from the House for a year, but not the Senate, So security at the final committee stop was heavy.

“Good afternoon members of the committee” welcomed Senate Appropriations Chair Kelli Stargel. 

Amendments were offered. One would have made an exception to the 15 weeks for rape or incest.

Kate Thompson, a rape victim from St. Petersburg was raped repeatedly over an eight year period 

“At the age of five, which was when I was just learning to tie my shoes, I was raped for the first time” Thompson told the Committee. She supported the amendment for rape or incest.

 

 

Bill Snyder of Monticello, asked the committee to vote no on the exception. 

“Execute the rapist and not the innocent unborn child” he said.

An amendment to provide more conception was defeated as well and the bill remained intact.

Roe v wade currently allows abortions through twenty-four weeks.”

But lawmakers are counting on the US Supreme Court to rule favorably on a Mississippi law that bans abortions after fifteen weeks.

Despite the tensions with Roe, Sponsor Kelli Stargel contends the bill is constitutional.

“Just because one court deemed something awhile back, doesn’t mean it can’t be revisited, and that’s what your are seeing” she told us.

A US Supreme Court ruling in the Mississippi case is expected in May or June. 

After passage today, the legislation heads for the Senate Floor and could be voted on as early as this week. It then goes to the Governor, who has indicated he will sign the 15 week ban.

 

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