Tuesday, February 13, 2007

Montana bill saying fetus as person still has chance

HELENA — A bill designed to lead to a constitutional amendment giving a fetus rights as a person was voted down in the House of Representatives Monday, but will be back again today for its third reading.

Because it would amend the constitution to specify that life begins at conception, the bill requires a two-thirds vote of the entire Legislature.

If its sponsor, Constitution Party member Rick Jore of Ronan, can muster 50 House votes today, it will go on to the Senate, according to legislative Legal Service Director Greg Petesch. Fifty votes is the minimum needed in the House to achieve full passage, assuming all 50 senators also voted for it.

"I bring this bill with a concern that perhaps as a nation have taken a wrong turn, that we have devalued human life since 1973 and the Roe vs. Wade decision," Jore said Monday.


Jore's bill — which would let voters consider a constitutional amendment in November 2008 — states that "Every person has a paramount and fundamental right to life." Opponents seized upon the word "paramount" as particularly worrisome.

"What about the mother whose life is in danger by carrying a pregnancy to term? Whose fundamental right takes precedence?" asked Rep. Robyn Driscoll, D-Billings.

What a stupid question. If the mother dies, then both die, so the mother has to be saved. It doesn't take an Einstein to figure that one out.


It doesn't sound like it will pass, but I'm still glad it's being debated