INDIANAPOLIS — The Senate convenes at 11 a.m. Saturday to vote on the controversial abortion ban bill.
Lawmakers are also expected to vote on the Senate’s version of an inflation-fighting bill. The House passed his version, which includes a taxpayer refund of $225, with a 93-2 vote on Friday.
The bill’s author, Senator Sue Glick, says she doesn’t expect the bill to come back from the House in the same form. She expects more changes to come from the House.
Senator Fady Qaddoura asks for clarification on several scenarios. It also asks about protections for people whose religious views do not align with the views of the abortion bill.
Senator JD Ford asks if the bill will ban abortions in the state. Glick says she thinks it will end many “elective” abortions and said the exceptions won’t stop abortions completely.
Glick admits she “has concerns” for the medical community and does not want to interfere with the doctor-patient relationship for mother and child care.
Glick acknowledges that the bill won’t appeal to everyone, note protesters on both sides of the issue.
When Sen. Greg Taylor asked if she considered the legislation “pro-life,” Glick said yes. Taylor also questioned the 8 and 12 week deadlines and whether they constituted a “forced” abortion.
Taylor asks Glick about the Dobbs decision and the basis for Roe vs. Wade. Taylor also discusses voting rights and the 14th Amendment, which includes the “equal protection clause.”
Glick said the bill would stop about 98% of all abortions that typically occur in Indiana.
Senator Tim Lanane questions the claim that this is not a forced pregnancy bill.
Glick admits she’s not “100%” happy with the bill but “can live with it”. If the bill doesn’t pass, she said the legislature would return in January to start all over again. During a discussion with Senator Eddie Melton, she acknowledges that it is an “imperfect bill”.
Senator Jean Breaux opposes the legislation and says abortion is a complicated decision that should be left to the mother. She said Senate Bill 1 is a “flawed bill” that is “retrograde” and an “attack on womanhood.”
Senator Mike Young calls it the “toughest decision” anyone in the chamber will make in their life. He said he had no hard feelings towards anyone who didn’t view the bill the same way he did. He plans to vote no, although he thinks it will pass because “that’s how the process is”. He does not believe the bill goes far enough and feels that the medical exception is too broad.
Young proposed an amendment to remove the rape and incest exceptions last week. His fellow legislators rejected him.
Lanane, speaking once again, said the bill takes away the choice. He said it was clear there were deep divisions on both sides of the issue and members of the chamber simply disagreed at the most basic level. He also questioned the process and noted that there was very little support for the legislation.
Lanane said the bill should not pass because some members think it doesn’t go far enough and others don’t want it at all. He feels the special session is being rushed and could result in a “bad bill”.
“We should drop this bill. It’s not ready to go anywhere,” Lanane said, expressing doubts the House can improve on it.
Ford, speaking again, said the legislature was convened for a special session initially focused on inflation relief that instead focused on abortion.
“A week to make a monumental decision, we all know that,” Ford said. “Abortion will overturn our economy. Health care providers will flee our state.
Ford suggested the legislation would compromise women’s care. He echoed Lanane’s call to drop the legislation and said it was clear “no one” wanted to be there and the abortion bill lacked real support.
Ford was also involved in a contentious interaction with Sen. Liz Brown, who pushed him over the limit he would put on the timeline to get an abortion.
Ford said he was not a medical provider and it was not for the government to make that decision.
Senator Kyle Walker said the issue is very “black or white” for some people when it comes to abortion. He thinks that, for many others, the problem lies in a “grey area”. He believes in the absence of restrictions for the first trimester as well as exceptions in certain cases (rape, incest, motherhood).
He plans to vote no and calls for a “more balanced” approach.
Senator Liz Brown questions Senator David Niezgodski, tries to get him to put an acceptable schedule on abortions.
Senator Michael Griffin leans heavily on his faith as he implores his colleagues to vote against the bill.