Emotions high as House committee hears heartbeat abortion bill

2 months 6 days 7 hours ago Tuesday, February 12 2019 Feb 12, 2019 Tuesday, February 12, 2019 2:45:00 PM CST February 12, 2019 in Top Stories
By: Eric Graves, KOMU 8 Reporter
loading

JEFFERSON CITY - Several abortion bills were heard Tuesday morning in a tense room filled with supporters and opponents.

One measure, called the heartbeat bill, would make it illegal for a woman to get an abortion once there is a heartbeat detected in the fetus. 

According to the bill's sponsor, Rep. Nick Schroer, R-O'Fallon, a heartbeat can be detected six weeks into pregnancy.

Erin King, an OBGYN from St. Louis, who is against the bill said six weeks is the earliest a heartbeat can be detected. But, she said, the bill is nearly a total ban on abortion, because most women do not find out they're pregnant until after six weeks.

"As a gynecologist, I see patients all the time who at least need to have the conversation about whether abortion is an option for them early in pregnancy and this would eliminate that chance to even have that conversation," King said.

She said mothers would rarely be able to find out if their fetus has a lethal problem or other health issues at less than six weeks. King said that effectively means women would not get a choice to have an abortion.

Among those testifying was Jennifer Box, who was pregnant with a girl named Libby before she got heartbreaking news.

"We learned at about 13 weeks pregnant that our very wanted third child had a chromosomal anomaly which is considered a lethal condition," she said.

Box and her husband said they decided to have the pregnancy terminated to save their unborn girl from a lifetime of pain, in the highly unlikely event she did survive.

“I think that’s my primary job as a parent is to protect my children, and with Libby we felt like we could protect her from a life of suffering by ending her life before that agony began," Box said.

If the heartbeat bill had been in effect at the time then Box and her husband would not have been able to make that choice in Missouri.

Box said she is now fighting this bill so every parent has the choice she was given. 

“The honor of my life is to fight in my daughter’s name," she said.

Schroer, who has two children, said his daughters have strengthened his resolve to fight against abortion.

"It's made me value life a heck of a lot more being a father of two beautiful daughters and I'm going to continue this fight because I know, without them in my life, I wouldn't be the same person I am," he said.

Schroer thanked the women who come forward to testify Tuesday, but said he would have liked to hear more from men.

"We really don't have a strong male figure that’s going to go out there and encourage women to be strong, encourage women to do the right thing, but also encourage life to be preserved as well," Schroer said.

Schroer said he wants to defend unborn children.

“The other side talks a lot about the choice of a woman, but when do these children have a choice?" Schroer said. "Somebody has to speak up for those that don't have a voice.”

Schroer said he is willing to work across the aisle to make the bill palatable for both sides, but will not stand for abortion.

King said, for her, it's all about allowing women to do whatever they feel is right for themselves and their families.

[CORRECTION: A previous version of this story incorrectly stated Rep. Nick Schroer represents Ferguson. He represents O'Fallon.]

More News

Grid
List
JEFFERSON CITY - Children from the Jefferson City and Columbia area showed off their businesses during the Jefferson City Children's... More >>
2 hours ago Saturday, April 20 2019 Apr 20, 2019 Saturday, April 20, 2019 5:17:00 PM CDT April 20, 2019 in News
COLUMBIA - The Columbia Parks and Recreation department held its annual "EGGstravaganza Egg Hunt" at Douglass Parks on Saturday afternoon.... More >>
4 hours ago Saturday, April 20 2019 Apr 20, 2019 Saturday, April 20, 2019 3:02:00 PM CDT April 20, 2019 in News
MOBERLY- The Moberly Police Department arrested a man on Friday afternoon after they received information from the FBI in Omaha,... More >>
9 hours ago Saturday, April 20 2019 Apr 20, 2019 Saturday, April 20, 2019 10:08:00 AM CDT April 20, 2019 in News
CALLAWAY COUNTY - A Fulton man will be in jail for the next 25 years after he pleaded guilty Friday... More >>
10 hours ago Saturday, April 20 2019 Apr 20, 2019 Saturday, April 20, 2019 8:47:00 AM CDT April 20, 2019 in News
GASCONADE COUNTY - The sex of human remains found in the Gasconade River have been identified as male, according to... More >>
23 hours ago Friday, April 19 2019 Apr 19, 2019 Friday, April 19, 2019 8:09:00 PM CDT April 19, 2019 in News
COLUMBIA - Sophomore forward Jontay Porter officially declared for the 2019 NBA Draft via Twitter Friday. pic.twitter.com/AHj67OWmqi... More >>
1 day ago Friday, April 19 2019 Apr 19, 2019 Friday, April 19, 2019 6:35:00 PM CDT April 19, 2019 in Sports
ROCHEPORT - Missouri State Parks said a tunnel on the Katy Trail will be closed for at least another month,... More >>
1 day ago Friday, April 19 2019 Apr 19, 2019 Friday, April 19, 2019 6:32:00 PM CDT April 19, 2019 in News
COLUMBIA — High winds caused two power outages Friday evening that affected more than 1,500 customers, Columbia Water & Light... More >>
1 day ago Friday, April 19 2019 Apr 19, 2019 Friday, April 19, 2019 6:23:00 PM CDT April 19, 2019 in News
COLUMBIA — The Missouri Secretary of State’s office awarded a “Spotlight on Literacy” grant to Daniel Boone Regional Library for... More >>
1 day ago Friday, April 19 2019 Apr 19, 2019 Friday, April 19, 2019 5:46:00 PM CDT April 19, 2019 in News
ST. LOUIS (AP) — A well-known radio personality in St. Louis is facing sex-related charges. ... More >>
1 day ago Friday, April 19 2019 Apr 19, 2019 Friday, April 19, 2019 4:52:00 PM CDT April 19, 2019 in News
FULTON — A building on the Missouri School for the Deaf's campus may become the new location of a county... More >>
1 day ago Friday, April 19 2019 Apr 19, 2019 Friday, April 19, 2019 3:44:00 PM CDT April 19, 2019 in News
BOONE COUNTY - Boone County Office of Emergency Management apologized Friday after accidentally sending out numerous severe weather alerts from... More >>
1 day ago Friday, April 19 2019 Apr 19, 2019 Friday, April 19, 2019 3:03:00 PM CDT April 19, 2019 in News
COLUMBIA - Attorney Stephen Wyse wants Governor Mike Parson to appoint a special prosecutor to investigate the relationship and alliance... More >>
1 day ago Friday, April 19 2019 Apr 19, 2019 Friday, April 19, 2019 2:39:00 PM CDT April 19, 2019 in News
COLUMBIA - The Columbia Board of Education approved a new compensation plan at Thursday's regular work session. The board voted... More >>
1 day ago Friday, April 19 2019 Apr 19, 2019 Friday, April 19, 2019 2:38:00 PM CDT April 19, 2019 in News
COLUMBIA - With April 20, or 4/20, falling on a weekend this year, the Missouri State Highway Patrol is preparing... More >>
1 day ago Friday, April 19 2019 Apr 19, 2019 Friday, April 19, 2019 1:56:00 PM CDT April 19, 2019 in News
JEFFERSON CITY (AP) — Missouri's House speaker said he doesn't plan on taking further action to discipline a House member... More >>
1 day ago Friday, April 19 2019 Apr 19, 2019 Friday, April 19, 2019 1:16:25 PM CDT April 19, 2019 in News
FARMINGTON (AP) — The wife of a Missouri Ku Klux Klan leader admitted Friday to fatally shooting her husband. ... More >>
1 day ago Friday, April 19 2019 Apr 19, 2019 Friday, April 19, 2019 12:48:00 PM CDT April 19, 2019 in News
COLUMBIA - The University of Missouri and Chancellor Alexander Cartwright released the fiscal budget for 2020, including a reallocation of... More >>
1 day ago Friday, April 19 2019 Apr 19, 2019 Friday, April 19, 2019 12:43:00 PM CDT April 19, 2019 in News
Columbia, MO
Broken Clouds 66°
8pm 65°
9pm 62°
10pm 58°
11pm 57°