SC bill would prohibit abortion if a heartbeat is detectable

The bill would require doctors to test for heartbeats. (Source: Patrick Lloyd WMBF)
The bill would require doctors to test for heartbeats. (Source: Patrick Lloyd WMBF)
Updated: Jan. 11, 2019 at 12:33 AM EST
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MYRTLE BEACH, SC (WMBF) - South Carolina lawmakers in the State House of Representatives introduced a bill Tuesday that would prohibit abortions if a heartbeat is detectable.

The bill would “require testing for a detectable fetal heartbeat before an abortion is performed on a pregnant women and prohibit the performance of an abortion when a fetal heartbeat is detected.”

More than 50 representatives are co-sponsoring the bill, which has people on both sides of the argument talking.

Jeannie Smith is the founder and CEO of Coastline Women’s Health Center in Conway. It provides counseling and medical services to pregnant women and women who have gone through an abortion. What it does not provide is abortions, as it’s a faith-based organization.

Smith said the bill would be good for those on the pro-life side.

“If we have someone who has a beating heart, that is a live person, and it’s the government’s duty to protect that life,” Smith said.

Smith added the bill would be a victory for the state.

“This would hopefully bring an end to abortion in the state of South Carolina,” she said.

However, not everyone agrees with her. Alester Pryor with the Horry County Democratic Party said the bill would be a violation of rights.

“A woman has a right to choose what to do with her body,” Pryor said.

She worries the bill would take away a woman’s right to choose, and she believes legislators shouldn’t take that right away.

“The representatives that we have in the state capitol should listen to the women, not make decisions on their moral standards,” she said.

The bill is currently sitting in the Committee on Judiciary.

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