The North Dakota House of Representatives has passed the first personhood amendment in the United States, 57-35. Read more
North Dakota Personhood bill (UPDATED)
UPDATE: There has been some confusion between SB 2302 and SB 2303.
SB 2302 was an abortion ban but also included needed regulation on in vitro fertilization. It's best known for that regulation. The in vitro folks didn't want any regulation that protects embryos, so they opposed the bill. SB 2302 failed in the ND Senate.
SB 2303 would ban abortion by defining the word "person" in the criminal code to "an individual member of the species homo sapiens at every stage of development." The ND Senate passed SB 2303, so it heads to ND House and, if successful, to governor's desk.
As originally posted on Jan 30, 2013:
North Dakota lawmakers have introduced SB 2302, a bill that would ban abortion. It defines abortion as:
[T]he crime of knowingly using or employing any instrument, device, or procedure upon a pregnant woman with the intent of causing the termination of the life of a preborn child, causing the death of that preborn child.
This bill contains an interesting clause:
Only birth control that can be clinically proven to kill a person shall be affected by this section. In the interest of protecting the health and safety of the people of North Dakota, the state department of health shall provide a list of birth control products along with their clinically proven effects upon women and preborn human beings at every stage of development.
About time! There’s been a lot of debate about whether or not birth control drugs cause abortions. People have been using these drugs in ignorance of their actual effects. I can’t wait to see the list.
The pro-aborts can relax a little because, disappointingly, the bill won’t actually take effect until a Personhood Amendment gets approved by the voters of North Dakota. Here’s the operative language:
This Act is effective on the date the secretary of state certifies to the legislative council that a constitutional amendment recognizing the inalienable right to life of all human beings at every stage of development has been approved by a majority of the voters in a statewide election.