LIMA — Rep. Bob Latta re-introduced two abortion bills Thursday in an effort to “protect mothers, babies and unborn children.”
The first, known as Protecting the Dignity of Unborn Children Act, makes it a federal crime to dispose of fetal remains in landfills or “any navigable waters” in the United States. Currently, such disposals are largely restricted due to state law.
For example, Gov. Mike DeWine signed a similar bill to restrict such actions in Ohio this past December.
Versions of Latta’s Dignity of Unborn Children Act has shown up on the congressional docket since 2016, but they have failed to make any headway despite Republican control in those years. For example, when the Republican from Bowling Green co-sponsored an early version of the bill in 2017 and sponsored another in 2018, both failed to make it out of committee.
In 2017, 860,000 abortions — which equates to the population of South Dakota — were conducted in the United States.
“We must do everything we can to protect and defend those who cannot do so themselves,” Latta said in a press release. “In order to protect the sanctity of life, it is necessary to ensure our laws are protecting mothers, babies and unborn children. Every life has value, and we must work together to be a voice for the voiceless and make significant strides to further pro-life policies.”
The second act, known as the Support and Value Expectant Moms and Babies Act, has a shorter history. Latta introduced a version of it back in 2019, which had been held up in committee a day after it was introduced. The re-introduced bill creates additional regulations around chemical abortion drugs.
More specifically, the bill would prevent labeling changes of already approved abortion drugs and prevent distribution of them by mail, remotely or via telemedicine, which largely restricts rural access to abortion. A Senate companion bill was also introduced by Sen. Cindy Hyde-Smith in order to push it forward. In 2017, 39% of abortions were conducted via chemical methods.
Out of the total women receiving abortions in that time, 75% were poor or low income, according to statistics compiled by the Guttmacher Institute.
“Pro-abortion advocates are working to loosen current restrictions on chemical abortion drugs and make them available remotely or by mail. This bill is necessary to prevent the repeal of these common-sense regulations,” Latta said in a press release.
Reach Josh Ellerbrock at 567-242-0398.