Louisiana Gov. John Bel Edwards, a pro-life Democrat, signed a “heartbeat” bill into law on Thursday, banning abortions in the state after unborn babies’ heartbeats are detected (around six-weeks gestation). Like other recent pro-life legation, SB 184 does not include exceptions for rape or incest.
On Wednesday, Gov. Edwards released a statement via Twitter regarding his support for the bill.
“In 2015, I ran for governor as a pro-life candidate after serving as a pro-life legislator for eight years,” he said. “As governor, I have been true to my word and my beliefs on this issue.”
“I know there are many who feel just as strongly as I do on abortion and disagree with me — and I respect their opinions,” the Democrat continued. “As I prepare to sign this bill, I call on the overwhelming bipartisan majority of legislators who voted for it to join me in continuing to build a better Louisiana that cares for the least amount us and provides more opportunity for everyone.”
As noted by The Hill, Louisiana is just the latest state to join in on sweeping pro-life bills across the nation; Georgia, Mississippi, Kentucky, Ohio, and Missouri have all passed “heartbeat” bills and earlier this month, and Alabama Gov. Kay Ivey (R) signed the country’s strictest abortion ban into law.
Earlier this month, Edwards — who is far from the base of his party with regard to abortion — spoke of his pro-life views.
“When I ran for governor, I said I was pro-life and so that’s something that’s consistent," he said, according to Fox News. “My position hasn’t changed. In eight years in the Legislature, I was a pro-life legislator.”
For the Democrat, being pro-life has personal significance. “Nearly three decades ago, he and his wife decided to have his daughter, diagnosed as a baby with spina bifida, against the doctor's advice to abort,” noted Fox News.
“I know that for many in the national party, on the national scene, that’s not a good fit. But I will tell you, here in Louisiana, I speak and meet with Democrats who are pro-life every single day," Edwards said during his monthly radio show.
Though abortion is not innately a partisan issue, the Democrat Party has seemingly abandoned all moderation. In January, for example, New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo (D) celebrated a bill permitting abortion up to the moment of birth for essentially any reason. And Virginia Gov. Ralph Northam (D), in the same month, endorsed abortion-til-birth and infanticide during a radio interview.
“When we talk about third-trimester abortions, these are done with the consent of the mother, with the consent of physicians, more than one physician by the way, and it’s done in cases where there may be severe deformities, there may be a fetus which is non-viable. So in this particular example, if the mother is in labor, I can tell you exactly what would happen, the infant would be delivered, the infant would be kept comfortable, the infant would be resuscitated if this is what the mother and the family desired, and then a discussion would ensue between the physician and the mother,” Northam said.
Moreover, not a single 2020 Democrat presidential candidate has voiced support for any abortion restriction.