House Speaker Kris Steele said April 19 that the body would not hear Senate Bill 1433, which would proclaim that embryos have all the same rights as folks not encased in a womb.
The bill is dead now that the House Republican Caucus voted to pull out the legislative equivalent of a vacuum hose and abort the personhood bill by preventing it from coming to the House floor.
But fear not, Steele said, the great men (and the few women) of the Legislature already have proven how much they love fetuses.
“The fact is this bill sends a statement Oklahoma has already made,” he said. “We’re already perhaps the most pro-life state in this country, having passed at least 30 various pro-life measures in the past eight years alone. You will not find a bigger friend of the unborn than this Legislature, but this bill would not have any substantive policy effect.”
Legislators — as well as physicians, pro-choice advocates and a whole bunch of others — have expressed concern about the bill. A lawsuit has been filed challenging a separate measure that would put the personhood language on the November ballot.
A few House Republicans, particularly Sally Kern and Paul Wesselhoft, quickly let it be known that they disapproved of the caucus’ decision.
Next up: a bill allowing fetuses to run for the Legislature. Good idea, or the greatest idea?