Bill passes Michigan House makes injury to fetus in attack a crime
LANSING, Mich. (SINCLAIR BROADCAST GROUP) —
Michigan lawmakers are mulling the question if an attacker injures or kills an unborn baby should the attacker be sentenced for hurting two people.
Republicans said House Bill 4500 would protect the unborn and pregnant women by considering a fetus a victim if harmed during a crime.
"What the legislature said is let's remove the ambiguity and make it clear in the statute so the judges know they have the ability to score this, or that they should score it and then they can sentence accordingly,” Ed Rivet said.
Rivet works for Michigan Right to Life, a major pro-life group in Michigan.
"I don't believe it's Constitutional,” Rep. Andy Schor said about the bill.
Schor, a Democrat, voted against the legislation on Thursday.
"The argument was that it codified a court decision, but it went a lot further than that.” Schor said. “It's didn't just talk about victims, it talked about persons, so it basically said an embryo is a person instead of a victim."
Planned Parenthood is blasting the bill saying it would, "...establish a fetal personhood, the first step anti-abortion extremists maintain is key to permanently outlawing abortion."
"They haven't been able to overturn Roe V. Wade, which allows for a woman's right to choose, so they [Right to Life] try a variety of different ways to do that and this is the most recent,” Schor said.
Right to Life Michigan said this debate shouldn't be about abortion rights.
"This is really about a pregnant woman who has become a victim of a crime,” Rivet said.
The State House approved the bill on Thursday and the legislation heads to the State Senate for a vote.
One Democrat in the House, Rep. Brian Elder, voted for the bill.