Anti-Abortion Bill Axed In Florida Senate
On Monday, the Florida Senate axed the anti-abortion bill that passed 78 to 33 in the House of Representatives last week.
Florida SB 290 requires a 24-hour waiting period on abortions, that doctors describe fetal pain to mothers, and that doctors attend a yearly ethics course. It also bans abortions in the second trimester if medical staff deems the pregnancy viable.
The Republican-controlled Senate voted 23 to 16 to block the measure from progressing in the 2012 legislative season, the Palm Beach Post reports.
Sen. Evelyn Lynn, R-Ormond Beach, spearheaded the vote on whether the Senate should proceed with the anti-abortion bill, saying "This public is calling and screaming, pleading with us to concentrate on bills that give us jobs, put food on our table and lower our cost of living."
Time Magazine recently decried how despite the state's deplorable unemployment and foreclosure woes, Florida is pushing politics back to the Culture Wars: "Both the right and the left are happily obsessed again with the righteous war over moral values – and Florida is leading the way."
State legislature recently voted to increase college tuition while supporting school prayer. Another recent bill attempted to ban Florida courts from using religious law (i.e. Islamic Shari’a law) in any legal decision.
And in a state that already has among the most restrictive abortion laws, the Senate found a bill that further infringed on women's rights was not even worth discussing this year.
No doubt Rush Limbaugh's public attack on women and their reproductive health forced several conservatives' vote to sway the other way.
"I believe that what's happening over contraceptives, and Rush Limbaugh and all that's going on in this country," said Sen. Nan Rich, D-Weston, "the polls are beginning to show that's hurting the people who are trying to hurt women's reproductive health."
Anitere Flores, R-Miami, who sponsored the Senate anti-abortion bill, is convinced the bill will have a better chance next year.