Atlanta City Council passes measure opposing state's 'heartbeat' bill

Atlanta City Council passes measure opposing state's 'heartbeat' bill
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The Atlanta City Council has voted unanimously to advance a resolution opposing the state's "heartbeat" abortion bill that passed earlier this month.

The legislative body passed the symbolic resolution "expressing the city’s opposition" to the bill banning abortions in the state once a fetal heartbeat is detected in a 13-0 vote on Monday.

The resolution now heads to Atlanta Mayor Keisha Bottoms (D) for consideration.

The vote comes as a number of district attorneys across the city have vowed not to prosecute women seeking abortions in the state in wake of the new law.

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City Councilman Amir Farokhi, who introduced the measure, said in a statement that it’s important for the council to "join the chorus Georgians speaking out for a woman’s right to choose” as the state’s largest city."

“The values represented in that bill are not those held by the majority of Atlantans,” Farokhi  said.

“Every woman has the right to choose,” he stated. “It’s not a decision that the government or, frankly, men, have any business interfering with. No woman should live in fear of prison time or the death penalty for making a decision regarding her health. Likewise, doctors should not fear imprisonment for doing their job." 

Under the legislation passed by Georgia’s legislature and signed by Gov. Brian Kemp (R) earlier this month, abortions in the state would be banned once a fetal heartbeat is detectable, which often occurs as early as six weeks into a pregnancy. The law would go into effect Jan. 1 unless blocked by federal courts.

Republicans passed similar laws in Ohio and Mississippi earlier this year. Last week, Alabama Gov. Kay Ivey (R) signed legislation that would ban the procedure in nearly all cases.