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Rep. Carra introduces plan to protect preborn babies with detectable heartbeats
RELEASE|October 20, 2021
Contact: Steve Carra

State Rep. Steve Carra today introduced a plan to protect preborn babies from abortion once a heartbeat can be detected, bringing Michigan closer to the ultimate goal of protecting life from the moment of conception.

“Only a few weeks after conception, a preborn baby’s heartbeat emerges as an audible reminder of the unique living person inside the mother,” said Carra, of Three Rivers. “As the Supreme Court actively reviews its faulty precedents that prevent states from protecting life at its earliest stages, my plan will provide another plank in the wall of defense for Michigan’s preborn babies. Medical advancements and science show that Roe v. Wade was wrong; preborn babies are not simply potential lives. They are fully human, alive, and clearly worthy of protection.”

The plan, which Carra originally helped draft when he was on House staff in 2019, consists of House Bills 5444 and 5445. The legislation would require a determination whether a preborn baby has a detectable heartbeat prior to an abortion. If a heartbeat is detected, the plan would prevent any abortion unless to save the life of the pregnant woman or to prevent serious impairment of a major bodily function. A physician performing such an abortion would be required to detail the specific risks to the mother that led to the decision. The mother of an aborted preborn baby would be protected from prosecution.

The plan would not conflict with existing abortion laws in Michigan, including those not in effect due to judicial decisions. Carra’s legislation specifically states that it would not authorize any abortion prohibited by another state law.

In July, Carra led a national coalition of state legislators urging the U.S. Supreme Court to defend the ability of state governments to protect preborn children. Carra was joined by 320 legislators from 35 states in submitting a brief in the case of Dobbs v. Whole Women’s Health Organization, which deals with a Mississippi law generally preventing abortions after 15 weeks.

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