Abortion bill dies — and it’s the Senate’s fault, says House speaker

HB 954, the bill to shorten the period of time in which a woman could seek an abortion, died this afternoon – a major defeat for pro-life forces. And House Speaker David Ralston just made sure everyone understood: It was the Senate’s fault.

The Senate substantively changed the bill on Monday, including an exception for “medically futile” pregnancies. The House refused to budge this afternoon, and Senate Republicans couldn’t persuade enough of their number to back off.

Said the speaker:

”This bill left this house as a structured proposition, the Senate amendment constituted an automatic disagree. It has gone back to the Senate. They have insisted on their substitute to the bill.

“The chair is not of the opinion that the Senate has the resolve at this time to deal with this bill. So at this point, there will not be a committee on conference appointed.”

In other words, Ralston can argue that he was on the side of Georgia Right to Life, but was thwarted by stubborn, more moderate forces in the Senate. In the process, he spared both chambers a bitter debate over the issue on Thursday, the final day of the session.

- By Jim Galloway, Political Insider

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74 comments Add your comment

ProgressivePeach

March 27th, 2012
5:34 pm

The Georgia GOP may be evil, but at least they’re incompetent too.

CobbGOPer

March 27th, 2012
5:35 pm

Jim, I wonder why they don’t blame the governor, as one of the defecting senators was Floor Leader Ronnie Chance…

Evan

March 27th, 2012
5:36 pm

More attempts to shove religious beliefs down the throats of everyone…amazingly it was thwarted this time by the Republican party not being able to get out of its own way.

Charles A. Jones Jr. (Athens)

March 27th, 2012
5:46 pm

I am profoundly disappointed in the 13 Senate Republicans – my own Senator, The Honourable Frank Ginn, wrote me an email in January telling me that he was excited about doing good things for life, then he votes for this killer amendment. Quite frankly, I would rather have Nan Orrock representing me – she disagrees with me, but at least she can tell me to my face that she disagrees with me. She doesn’t tell me what I want to hear just to get me out of the way. I disagree with Senator Orrock, but I can respect her. I cannot respect my Republican Senator.

Mid Ga Retiree

March 27th, 2012
5:53 pm

If the issue of whether or not to have an abortion came up in my family, I would want the decision to be made by our family, and God, not the government.

GaNative

March 27th, 2012
5:54 pm

This bill was too extreme for the majority of Georgians, banning abortions beyond 20 weeks in the case of rape and incest or where the fetus was medically nonviable.

I’m glad pragmatism won out over ideological purity. I wish that was the case more often.

Tom

March 27th, 2012
6:01 pm

This is what happens when moonbats keep proposing nonviable bills.

Tim

March 27th, 2012
6:03 pm

It’s amazing that people actually vote for these Republican clowns. THEY DO NOTHING to enhance the lives of the citizens of Georgia. There are so many important issues that are never addressed. For instance, our traffic laws need to be reformed. GEORGIA IS THE ONLY STATE where a traffic violation is a criminal offense. You can get a misdemeanor if you violate traffic laws here! In most states, it is only an infraction.

The traffic laws are outrageous in Georgia, and it is never discussed. The Augusta Chronicle did a series of articles on this topic a year or two ago. Do you know if you go 10 days ( Just 10 days) without continuous car insurance, you’ll have to pay $60 to get your vehicle registration reinstated? The traffic laws are overly harsh and unreasonable. Do Republicans ever look at something like that? No, they’re too busy controlling womens’ bodies, lavishing tax breaks on corporations, reducing unemployment payments, and making poor people take drug tests. Nothing but a bunch of worthless scoundrels.

another sane voice.

March 27th, 2012
6:10 pm

If they weren’t playing with the bodies of Women and girls, this game these Republican’s are playing for politics would be funny. It is amazing how the women, including several Republican women stood up for the Woman’s rights. Even the Women Republican’s did not want this without exemptions or the timelines reduced.

These stupid men could not explain, when a women got her period vs when her cycle started. That was hilarious when one of the women made a male legistlature look absolutely stupid, telling him you do not know what you are talking about.

Let’s put it this way, it is a women’s body and her right to choose. Lets just ask how many of these pregnancies are in marriage? Even if they are, how many marriages end in divorce? Over 50%, and most of the men just walk away. Including several of these Politicians. They move on to other women. Of course they want the wives and children to be campaign props.

Thank you Nan and the other Women who fought and won. Thanks to the doctors who spoke out about the attacks against their offices and their first ammendment rights.

Centrist

March 27th, 2012
6:30 pm

Republicans show some moderation, and it is spun by Galloway (and his fellow liberal posters) as duplicitous. But liberal Galloway is consistent – he spun the 20% of Democrats who moderated to allow voters to decide on charter schools as having taken bribes.

honested

March 27th, 2012
6:40 pm

Fault?

If a stupid bill that should never have been brought to the floor ‘dies’ how on earth is it anyone’s fault?

Georgians would be much better off this session is several other ill considered crap legislation had died in committee (of course that would require LEGISLATORS that DO THEIR JOB rather than pander to funders).

honested

March 27th, 2012
6:41 pm

centrist,

Odd how you pick out one of the CLASSIC stupid bills that should have died in committee.

pick-r-pockets

March 27th, 2012
6:48 pm

This is a decision best made between those personally involved, NOT by politicians or by those shoving their personal religious beliefs on others. It’s a personal matter usually reached by gut wrenching anguish. It’s not a matter women take lightly.

hl

March 27th, 2012
7:16 pm

I’m old enough to remember hearing stories about those who had to carry non-viable fetuses to term so the bill brought back times during the late sixties. Let’s not step backwards. I agree that abortion should be rare but let’s not go back to the coke bottle years. Let’s protect those that are born. It amazes me how many of those on this site preach anti-abortion but also preach no help for the living. It’s not everyone so I will not generalize but there are more than a few.

td

March 27th, 2012
7:36 pm

Either outlaw abortion and take our chances back in the SCOTUS or leave it alone. You can not play around the edges with murder.

Sherilu

March 27th, 2012
7:52 pm

Thank you, God. This was a “Butcher Women” bill. It did not stop one abortion on it’s face, it only mandated that the abortion be performed in such a way to give the fetus the most chance of survival. Chance of survival for a non-viable fetus. The procedure used would have been an old-fashioned C-section where the woman is sliced from breastbone to pubic bone, thus creating a situation where a future pregnancy would be more risky. In the hearing for the Senate Committee, most of the Republicans came off as total misogynists and idiots. After a panel of Northside Doctors testified on the problems with the bill one our brilliant Senators declared “I don’t trust anything Drs. say”. Rene Untermann (?) showed total contempt for the committee process, relying on voice votes that were close. She refused to poll the members. Thank God she doesn’t represent me. Unless our citizens decide to pay attention to whom they elect we are doomed to insane governance in this state.

hl

March 27th, 2012
7:55 pm

TD..really… really… When you give birth to a child that has fewer than ten toes and ten fingers and lives in pain for three days before dying come back and preach to me brother. Remember the Lord who spoke about those throwing stones? You must be so happy about today’s hearings at SCOTUS cuz who wants the poor to get health care. Protect those cells brother….

honested

March 27th, 2012
7:56 pm

td,

What say we follow the precedent established in 1973 by the Supreme Court and LEAVE IT ALONE!

This is not an issue for yahoos to pander to the camera with.

GaBlue

March 27th, 2012
8:01 pm

Charles A. Jones, Jr. (Athens),

Why don’t you and your perv pal Danbo go have a few drinks and rethink your strategy of manipulating and controlling the female (more than) half of the population with intrusive laws, fear, and force. There are better ways to get a lady follow orders.

I know, I know, it’s not FUN unless you can force them! But life isn’t always about you having fun. It’s time for you and your little Fetus Frat buddies to grow up and learn to live in the real world — with real women. Do you really think women will just GIVE UP their rights to you… because you say so? After fighting for centuries just to get THIS far (which isn’t nearly as far as it should be)?

Bless your hearts.

ATLWoman

March 27th, 2012
8:09 pm

Dan Becker is a freak of nature. His rants show how out of touch he really is with Georgia’s women. And, by the way? Women outnumber men in this State, Mr. Becker.

td

March 27th, 2012
8:09 pm

honested

March 27th, 2012
7:56 pm

And the SCOTUS has never been wrong? Can you say Dread Scott decision. I think the court is ripe to see major change to Roe v. Wade and it is time to outlaw this murder. I do not like this playing around the edges because it is either murder at 1 week or 6 months or not.

td

March 27th, 2012
8:21 pm

hl

March 27th, 2012
7:55 pm

I have been saying for months that Obamacare was unconstitutional. The government can not force a person to purchase a product.

The poor have healthcare. It is called Medicaid and I think about 20% of Georgia’s population is current receiving the entitlement and costing the state about 30% of it annual budget.

td

March 27th, 2012
8:25 pm

hl

March 27th, 2012
7:55 pm

TD..really… really… When you give birth to a child that has fewer than ten toes and ten fingers and lives in pain for three days before dying come back and preach to me brother.

So it is better to go ahead and put that child out of its misery like you would take a sick dog out in the woods and shoot it?

Shirley

March 27th, 2012
8:55 pm

I’ll take it whoever is at fault.

Shar

March 27th, 2012
9:04 pm

@td: “The government can not [sic] force a person to purchase a product” but it’s alright with you for the government to force a woman to carry and bear a child she does not want?

Would you truly be willing to go back to the days in which women who knew they could not care for a child were forced to risk their lives trying to initiate unsafe miscarriages, or go to back-alley slashers in desperation? Are you really willing to force the spectacle of women being forced to carry pregnancies to term whether they want the baby or not? [ Remember, we live in a country that is around 50th in maternal deaths - lower than Albania.] Is this really what your religious conviction wants you to perpetrate on people who do not believe as you do?

This is a private decision among the people – man, woman and doctor – who know the specifics of the situation. There is just no room for absolutists like you or Dan Becker with your utter certainty of “right”, regardless of reason, in that very personal discussion.

GaBlue

March 27th, 2012
9:12 pm

Shar,

Yes, they ARE willing to go back to those horrible days. (There’s lots of things they love about the “good ol’ days.” Ewww…. creepy shivers just thinking about it!)

That’s how much they simply don’t give a doggone about anyone else’s problems, especially those they consider inferior. That’s how much they truly value their egos over anything else. There’s no way to reason with people like that. We can only expose them for what they are: perverts.

Jiggle the Handle

March 27th, 2012
9:20 pm

Lots of emotion here, and more than a little anger from both sides. What always puzzles me about The Right is their one-note song, the lock-step march supporting free market principles, no regulations of any kind, with side parries of vehemence directed toward what they deem as “activist judges, and, most of all, their insistence on elimination governmental intrusion in our private lives–thus heroically defending our “inalienable rights”…

…that is, until the topic is one their “core beliefs”. Then, any amount of jack-booted government intrusion is just fine by them because morality is on their side, and besides, God told them they were right.

There can’t be a more wrenching and personal decision for a mother and father to make than to end a process that initially brought so much joy and promise. But, sometimes it’s the right choice, though that choice brings no less pain. It’s a private matter, best left to those involved and their medical and spiritual advisers.

I’m tired of a bunch of middle-aged white men (although I fit that description) telling women that they should defer to the higher intelligence and morality of the GA Legislature, because, after all, women are incapable of arriving at a decision about what’s best for their health and life circumstance.

Yes, I’m tired of theses presumptuous and and self-appointed defenders of public morality that masquerade as Georgia State Legislators. There are a few that remain true public servants, but most are empty suits. Wake up Georgia. Don’t let these clowns control your lives.

td

March 27th, 2012
9:21 pm

Shar

March 27th, 2012
9:04 pm

First off my thoughts have very little to do with my religious beliefs and a great deal to do with the thought that all Americans (including the unborn) have certain inalienable rights. You know like life and liberty.

Either you believe that an unborn child is a human being or not. If they are then you can not approve of the murder of such human being for any reason because they have rights.

It is not that complicated. Woman’s choice only means that the state has given a woman the right to kill another human being and since that is the case presently in this country then all life is not treated equally and what is next? Can the government decide if you are getting older and starting to cost money and not productive then you should sacrifice your life for the betterment of society as a whole?

td

March 27th, 2012
9:24 pm

GaBlue

March 27th, 2012
9:12 pm

I see you do not believe in the Declaration of Independence either. If life is not viable inside the womb then it is proven a child can not live on their own outside womb for their first 2 years so why not give the parents the right to murder these children as well?

GaBlue

March 27th, 2012
9:40 pm

td,

It’s obvious that you have no idea what was contained in this particular bill. THIS bill would have put the government (on behalf of idiots like you) in the middle of critical, crisis-level medical decisions of a woman more than half way through a complicated, dangerous pregnancy she already chose not to abort. And by critical, crisis-level medical decisions, I mean: STUFF YOU ARE NOT QUALIFIED TO EVALUATE.

But hey, that never stopped you before! Please carry on yammering and sputtering stuff you know nothing about until some third-world medical school finally accepts you. Then you can go play God somewhere else! No one here is interested.

Look before I leap...

March 27th, 2012
10:06 pm

@td

“The poor have healthcare. It is called Medicaid and I think about 20% of Georgia’s population is current receiving the entitlement and costing the state about 30% of it annual budget.

You’re saying GA spends 30% of its annual budget on Medicaid?
Really? in FY 12 Budget dollars, that is about $5.5B
You are either bad at math or bad at reading.

Just as a note, not every low income person qualifies for Medicaid.
But hey, if they are poor and get sick, screw ‘em!

MerryMary

March 27th, 2012
10:06 pm

Fault? It’s the fault of the Senate that this bill died? No!!! It is to their everlasting credit.

td

March 27th, 2012
10:08 pm

GaBlue

March 27th, 2012
9:40 pm

No, that is what you abortion rights people wanted to make this bill about which happens in what % of cases less then 1%. The proponents of the bill wanted to stop abortions at 20 weeks (5 months) because it is a scientific fact that the unborn child would feel pain afterwords.

I do not like the bill because I think any abortion is murder and the unborn are human beings and should have the same protections under the law as any other citizen.

You keep convincing yourself that it is only a fetus (less than human) and a woman’s right to how they feel are more important then human life.

Look before I leap...

March 27th, 2012
10:09 pm

Abortion laws are men’s revenge for suffrage.

td

March 27th, 2012
10:15 pm

Look before I leap…

March 27th, 2012
10:06 pm

“The $6 billion Georgia Medicaid program (including federal funds) faces continuing budget problems. It also confronts a huge expansion of Medicaid beginning in 2014″

http://www.georgiahealthnews.com/2011/07/navigant-nod-study-medicaid-overhaul/

It appears my numbers may have been a little low my friend. And the URL also talks about how much more it is going to cost the state if Obamacare goes into effect.

If I am not mistaken we are paying more for Medicaid in the state then we are paying for higher education. If the trends continue and Obamacare goes into effect then we will be paying more for people to have insurance then we pay to give them a k-12 education.

td

March 27th, 2012
10:18 pm

Look before I leap…

March 27th, 2012
10:06 pm

“Just as a note, not every low income person qualifies for Medicaid.
But hey, if they are poor and get sick, screw ‘em!”

No it is going to screw our children in getting the basic education to take care of people that do not want to take care of themselves.

Lynn43

March 27th, 2012
10:26 pm

For years these arrogant legislators have shown that they think they know more than educators by passing anti-public education bills without any input from those in the profession. Now they are intruding on the medical community. Do any of these legislators have this kind of education? How many have doctor’s degrees either in education or medicine? How many have worked in either field? They choose to do what they think will get them votes or how the lobbyists or ALEC tells them to vote. They can’t even do the research and think for themselves.

Look before I leap...

March 27th, 2012
10:36 pm

@td

I’d have to look at fed reimbursement (700M in 2010) and I think your amounts don’t reflect capitation.
I also think your numbers include Ga Better Health and Peach Care.
But per the budget appropriations for FY12, Medicare was significantly lower than your claim.

honested

March 27th, 2012
10:46 pm

td,

One small definition error.
Medicaid provides MEDICAL CARE to low income individuals.
They are lucky enough to be removed from the parasitic, for profit ‘health insurance’ system.

It is all a pool of the same money and the insurance parasites are not performing any magic by skimming 45% off the top.

So, WHEN the ACA becomes law, the state will have to face the facts of the real costs of their Federal and human responsibilities and raise the revenues to pay for education and healthcare.

honested

March 27th, 2012
10:48 pm

Lynne43,

I hope this election season that even the dimmest among us comes to understand what an evil entity ALEC is and how much damage it has wrought on the American Public to enrich a very, very few.

Look before I leap...

March 27th, 2012
10:49 pm

@td

We’ve had this discussion before.
Poor people are poor because they have made bad decisions

That they work at low paying jobs, a bad decision.
That they work for employers who do not offer insurance, another bad decision.

But hey, let assume everyone all of sudden, everyone makes good decisions, gets good paying jobs, the employer are all beneficent and start providing insurance to all its employees. Of course all those high paying jobs and health benefits cost the employer more,, so he must raise his prices. Now we have hyper-inflation, a head of lettuce costs $7, a gallon a milk is $9, gas prices rise to $6 Now those new wages aren’t so great any longer…and where are we?

Your short sightedness is amazing.

As to your deflection about education, if you want better schools, pay higher property taxes. But leave mine the same as my kids are in private colleges. After all, why should I subsidize your poor decision to send your kids to state schools.

honested

March 27th, 2012
11:06 pm

Look before….

The sad thing is that so many believe that ‘good decisions’ nonsense and are willing to go along with defective budgeting to support it.
Only in wrong-wing land is raising inadequate revenue seen as a ‘good decision’.

Pizzaman

March 27th, 2012
11:07 pm

Redneckrepublicans blaming Redneckrepublicans. Ain’t life grand!!!!!!

td

March 27th, 2012
11:08 pm

honested

March 27th, 2012
10:46 pm

The most ardent libs are now saying the ACA (Obamacare) will be ruled unconstitutional after oral arguments today.

Shoshanna

March 27th, 2012
11:11 pm

Me thinks the reports of the death of this bill have been greatly exaggerated.

td

March 27th, 2012
11:21 pm

Look before I leap…

March 27th, 2012
10:49 pm

My degree is in education and I understand that parental involvement is the key to being successful in the classroom so my kids will thrive in almost any classroom (as they are currently doing).

I know I have said this before but will say it again. We do not have a real problem with poverty in this country. What we have is a problem with people having children out of wedlock and people getting divorced without the means to care for the children in a two household family. If two parents with zero skills make minimum wage ($7.25 per hour) then there yearly income a little over $30,000 per year. Now this is not great but it is not poverty either and people can make it if they budget their money. There is no way a single person with a child can make it $7.25 per hour. A single person with a child can not even make it on $12 per hour but what if both parents made $12 or $10 per hour? They would be considered in the top 40% of wage earners in the country.

Look before I leap...

March 27th, 2012
11:35 pm

If ACA bites the dust and removing the individual mandate will likely kill the entire legislation.

Why not simplify a bit.
We spend about 2.5 trillion a year in this country on health care costs.
We have about 135 million individual taxpayers.
If every taxpayer pays a flat $20/year, no exceptions, exclusions or adjustments, that is 2.6 trillion dollars, each and every year. This gets paid into a payor trust and is untouchable by any government agency. Surpluses remain in the trust. Deficits are administrative costs are covered employers who will pay $500/employee/annum per year into the trust
We can eliminate Medicare and Medicaid costs.

We already have mechanisms in place for payment schedules by geo area.
States charge $10 per tax return to fund oversight and claims handling.

People are welcome to purchase additional coverage if they wish on the open market at market rates. (Bet you see those pesky premiums come down quite a bit).

Private hospitals and physician practices must make a certain portion of their services available at prevailing government rates.

Viagra and birth control are NOT covered.
Want a boob job, start saving those pennies.

So what is wrong with the above proposal?

Married for Life

March 28th, 2012
12:24 am

It’s a bad bill. Let it RIP.

Dolores Williams

March 28th, 2012
12:35 am

Look before I leap...

March 28th, 2012
12:40 am

sorry – left off a couple of 0’s
2,000/fed tax return
100/state return

back of the envelope numerical notation.