It was a dark dark day for the 5,000 pre-born babies who are about to die this year in Oklahoma, as a vote to completely abolish abortion in the State was voted down in committee 10-0, led by a majority of professing pro-life Republicans.
On Wednesday the GOP-controlled Health and Human Services Committee voted to snuff out Senate Bill 495, which has been a rallying cry for abortion abolitionists in the state and across the country, and ensuring that it can’t be brought up for two more years.
SB495 is unique from every other weak, emaciated, nibble-around-the-edges “pro-life” bill in that it gives babies in the womb equal protection under the law and was designed to have Oklahoma completely and decisively abolish abortion regardless of the U.S. Supreme Court’s Roe v. Wade decision that legalized the practice.
Under the proposed legislation, Oklahoma would specifically ignore that court ruling and defy the Supreme Court if and when they invariably interfered.
In short, it’s designed to actually save babies’ lives, triggering a cultural paradigm shift and waking the conscience of the nation.
Yet despite Oklahoma being the most pro-life state in the country, with a Republican supermajority in the House and Senate who campaigned on their pro-life credentials, this bill was rejected by the panel while at the same time approving 5 toothless pro-life bills that don’t do anything to end abortion.
GOP Senators Greg McCortney, Paul Rosino, John Haste, Jessica Garvin, Julie Daniels, Rob Standridge, and Frank Simpson joined Democrats George Young, Carri Hicks, and Jo Anna Dossett in voting it down, making it clear that the one issue that brings Republicans and Democrats together in Oklahoma politics is the effort to allow people to continue to kill babies.
The panel didn’t even bother asking questions about it. There was no debate. There was no discussion. No one asked about the particulars. There was no interaction. They voted it down as fast as they could, hoping to not have to deal with abolition issues all the while pointing to their own meek regulations in an effort to score fundraising dollars for the next election cycle.
A similar occurrence happened in 2019, when church-going pro-life politicians killed HB 948 Texas Abolition of Abortion in Texas Act. Like Oklahoma, neither the Democrats, Planned Parenthood, or any other pro-choice group had any power to stop it from going through. The decision to kill the bill came from Republican legislators supported and encouraged by pro-life groups like National Right to Life and Southern Baptist President J. D Greear, who expressly stated that they did not want the bill to pass.
As far as where that leaves us now, Chris Rochell said it best:
Everything the pro-life movement has ever said they fight for was on the line today. A chance to achieve what they say they have always wanted. A bill that would protect all children. It was voted down 10-0. Pro-life and pro-choice are now inseparable, two sides of the same coin. Your choices going forward are abolition, or pro “choice.” The pro-life movement, like the children they failed to protect, is dead.
Despite this collusion by the pro-lifers to kill the bill, the abortion abolitionists are not going away. They are still planning their conference and rally, energized and invigorated by the events, and ready to keep on moving the abolitionist culture in Oklahoma.
If you’re in the state or nearby, we encourage everyone to check out Abolition Now conference and Abolition Day rally on February 8 and 9.