Pennsylvania governor vows to veto 'heartbeat' abortion bill if it passes

Pennsylvania governor vows to veto 'heartbeat' abortion bill if it passes
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Pennsylvania Gov. Tom Wolf (D) on Tuesday vowed to veto a recently introduced “heartbeat” abortion bill should it reach his desk.

Wolf quote-tweeted a news headline detailing Pennsylvania lawmakers' unveiling of a new bill that would ban abortions in the state after a fetal heartbeat is detected, which can be as early as six to eight weeks.

“Correction: Pennsylvania will NOT be the next state to ban abortion because I will VETO this bill,” Wolf tweeted, along with the hashtag “StopTheBans.” 

Republican lawmakers in Pennsylvania on Monday introduced heartbeat bills seeking to make the state the latest to implement the restrictive measure.

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Republican state Sen. Doug Mastriano and Republican state Rep. Stephanie Borowicz introduced the legislation they say is intended to challenge the Supreme Court’s 1973 Roe v. Wade decision that legalized abortion nationwide.

“When you hear a baby’s heartbeat, everything changes,” Borowicz said at a press conference unveiling the bill, according to PennLive. “If you can be declared dead when the heart stops why not declared alive when it starts?”

The bill would require all physicians to determine whether the baby has a heartbeat before performing an abortion, and if it does, the abortion cannot be performed.

Borowicz said the bill could be the “dagger in Roe v Wade.”

Abortion is currently allowed in Pennsylvania up to 24 weeks into a pregnancy, with further exemptions if the mother’s life is in danger.

Following the bill’s introduction Monday, Wolf issued a statement making clear he would veto it should it pass the state legislature.

"I will veto any abortion ban that is put on my desk. The latest bill, a six-week abortion ban, defies all practical understanding of modern women’s health care. These policies run counter to the notion of individual freedom and lack a sound scientific basis. Further, as we have seen in other states, these policies are detrimental to efforts to attract and retain businesses, entrepreneurs and workers,” the statement read.

Wolf made a similar statement promising to strike down any anti-abortion law in the state earlier this year after Republican governors in Alabama and Georgia signed legislation restricting the procedure into law.