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Fearing Public Reaction . . . Arizona Democrat Legislators Abandon Their Radical Abortion Bill

February 24, 2019 Frontpage No Comments

By DEXTER DUGGAN

PHOENIX — As Arizona Democrat legislators dashed away from their support for a radical pro-abortion bill, a local Tea Party leader told The Wanderer that a pro-life victory here can serve as an example to other states facing a legislative push for the Democrats’ Culture of Death.
The bill, sponsored by the Democrats’ leadership in the Arizona House of Representatives, crashed to failure at a February 20 hearing of the House Judiciary Committee, with even Democrat committee members voting against it. The vote was 0 to 8, with two votes of “present.”
Even the prime Democrat sponsor of HB 2696, Raquel Teran, pled with the committee to set it aside. But the committee’s Republican majority chairman, Rep. John Allen, moved ahead with the hearing as he noted that the entire leadership of the minority party was on the bill, which would have repealed Arizona law requiring care for abortion-surviving babies.
HB 2696 was viewed as part of national Democrats’ current push for radical pro-abortion laws around the nation, after one passed in New York but another ultimately failed in Virginia.
Saying her own bill went further than her intent, Teran sparred with Allen at the hearing — which lasted nearly two hours — on whether to move ahead to consider the measure.
She said she was warned that the day would be “a circus.”
Teran cited a case of a miscarried baby being subjected to “hopeless medical procedures,” but Allen asked how a miscarriage would be affected by the bill before the committee. She deflected from answering his question.
Some observers said that as facts became known, the Grand Canyon State Democrats were trying to wriggle away from being associated with the ugly measure. Seventeen of the House’s 29 Democrats had sponsored it. The Arizona House has a total of 60 members.
A Republican Judiciary Committee member, Rep. Jay Lawrence, told the hearing that it was apparent some committee members would do anything they can to subvert having a discussion of the measure.
After the bill’s defeat, Ron Ludders, chairman of north Phoenix’s Arizona Project Tea Party, told The Wanderer on February 20: “They wanted to pull that bill because they knew it was going to go down. . . . We’ve got to be able to stop these people” after they showed their intent with the New York and Virginia legislation allowing “fourth trimester abortion.”
Referring to the Arizona bill’s sponsors, Ludders said, “I’m gonna remember these people’s names and put it out there” come election time. “. . . The party of the common man is no longer the party of the common man. It’s the party of the wicked. . . . I hate to say things like that, but it’s true.”
Rep. Walter Blackman, also a GOP Judiciary Committee member, told the hearing, “This was very hard for me to sit here” and listen to talk about abortion, because of the high number of babies killed from his own community. “On average, 900 African-American babies are killed a day,” totaling 19 million killed since national permissive abortion was legalized in 1973, he said.
Blackman said it’s ironic that those who want to protect his civil rights also want to kill him before birth.
As for whether HB 2696 should be approved, “I vote absolutely not,” he said.
One witness against the Democrats’ bill, Allan Sawyer, MD, an ob-gyn, referred to Teran’s comment that to provide assistance to a distressed baby would be taking the baby from the mother. However, Sawyer said, the intent isn’t to deprive the mother of the baby, but to ensure an entire life for the baby with the mother. Most doctors, Sawyer said, “want to deliver babies, not to destroy them.”
A February 19 news release from the Arizona Republican Party quoted pro-life GOP State Rep. Nancy Barto: “It’s clear that if Democrats were ever to gain a majority in the State House and Senate, the ugly trend of extreme pro-abortion policies we see popping up across the country would very quickly start taking effect in Arizona as well.”
Barto, a member of the House Judiciary Committee, voted against Teran’s bill.
The GOP news release, issued the day before the hearing, also quoted state party chairwoman and physician Kelli Ward saying: “With this bill, Arizona Democrat lawmakers have turned their backs on the very members of our society who are unable to defend themselves — innocent babies. I urge every Arizonan who values and cherishes life to contact your legislators and urge them to oppose this horrific legislation.”
The pro-traditional values Center for Arizona Policy issued a news release shortly after the loss for the Democrats, saying: “Over 600 Arizonans, not willing to follow New York’s lead in passing extreme abortion laws, packed House hearing rooms in protest of HB 2696.
“Protesters made it clear to lawmakers behind the ruthless bill that they stood alone if they repealed protections for babies born alive during an abortion,” the release added.
In addition to two hearing rooms filled with citizens observing the proceedings, the State Capitol also opened the House chamber itself, where a large screen above the speaker’s chair showed the hearing to a nearly full spectators’ gallery.
Tea Party leader Ludders told The Wanderer that he didn’t think such a bill would come up again for years in Arizona. He characterized it as “cruel and unusual punishment” for babies, commenting that it meant “just throw the baby on the table and wait for it to die. I wouldn’t even do that to a dog.”

Silent No Longer

When I arrived at the Capitol, a long line awaiting admission already stretched out of the House building, and a further long line formed behind me. It took me about 30 minutes to get through the front doors.
Although the sky was clear blue and not a flake of snow was to be seen, with a crisp morning temperature around 40 degrees, the woman next to me, Andrea Allison, joked, “They’re trying to bring the laws and the weather of New York here.”
The Wanderer asked three women at the hearing for their reaction after it concluded.
Amanda Wolfe, of the Phoenix suburb of Gilbert, said that the Democrats’ proposing such a bill was “ludicrous, unjust, unlawful. . . .
“I am very thankful that as a Christian community, we arise from passivity,” Wolfe said. “I think for far too long, Christians have been passive. . . . But it’s a silent majority no longer.”
Angela Sannapu, of Phoenix, said the Democratic attempt to set aside their own bill “was a desperate cry to silence the voice of conscience inside of all of us. . . . When death and destruction come to light, they have to flee and hide.”
Sannapu’s daughter, Mary, said, “They’re trying to hide it because it’s evil and it’s terrible. . . . They call the woman a patient, but the baby is a victim. . . . It would lead to more terrible things.”

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