On Friday, Arizona State Rep. Walt Blackman and our friends at End Abortion Now held a press conference to present The Abolition of Abortion in Arizona Act (HB2650), and a subsequent rally in support of the bill. HB2650 establishes that a “Person includes a child in the womb at any state of development” and would totally and immediately abolish abortion in the state in defiance of the supreme court.
HB2650 debuts with 10 authors, including Blackman, House Majority Leader Ben Toma, House Majority Whip Leo Biasiucci, and Reps. Brenda Barton, Shawnna Bolick, Judy Burges, Frank Carroll, David Cook, John Fillmore, and Jake Hoffman.
Section 21 of the bill provides the purpose clause:
The Legislature intends to:
- Provide unborn children the equal protection of the laws of this state, to establish that a living human unborn child from the moment of fertilization and at every stage of development is entitled to the same rights, powers, privileges, justice and protections as are secured or granted by the laws of this state to any other human person.
- Rescind current licenses to kill unborn children by repealing discriminatory provisions in order to cause all alleged offenders to be equally subject to the law, including its prohibitions, defenses, justifications and immunities.
- Treat as void and of no effect any and all federal acts, laws, treaties, decisions, orders, rules or regulations that would deprive an unborn child of the right to life or prohibit the protection of such right.
HB2650 strikes from the Arizona code language repeated in four different sections which gave the license to commit murder to abortionists and mothers.
A person shall not be prosecuted under subsection A, 20 paragraph 1 of this section if any of the following applies: 21
The person was performing an abortion for which the consent of the pregnant woman, or a person authorized by law to act on the pregnant woman’s behalf, has been obtained or for which the consent was implied or authorized by law.
The person was performing medical treatment on the pregnant woman or the pregnant woman’s unborn child.
The person was the unborn child’s mother.
The Abolition of Abortion in Arizona Act also establishes that “The county attorney shall enforce title 13, chapter 11 in relation to homicide by abortion regardless of any contrary or conflicting federal laws, regulations, treaties, court decisions or executive orders.”
It is estimated that 1200-1500 supporters were in attendance for the press conference and rally. The press conference, which began at 11 a.m., featured a Q&A with Blackman, and speeches from Pastor Jeff Durbin and Dennis Sarfate.
The rally featured speeches from Rep. Blackman, his wife Kristi Blackman, Durbin, Sarfate, Rusty Thomas, Luke Pierson, Zack Morgan, Zach Lautenschlager, and Bradley Pierce.
The bill now awaits a committee assignment, with the House Judiciary and Health and Human Services committees being the most likely assignments. There is an outside chance of an assignment to the House Criminal Justice Committee of which Blackman is the chairman.