URGENT! Ask TN gov to veto nation’s most restrictive abortion ban


In the middle of the night yesterday, the Tennessee Legislature passed one of the most restrictive abortion bills in the country, effectively outlawing the procedure in your state. Please contact Gov. Bill Lee and demand that he veto this unconstitutional bill.

S.B. 2196/H.B. 2263 criminalizes doctors who perform abortions after six weeks and restricts the reasons patients can seek an abortion. This bill also includes insidious language to restrict access at multiple points during the pregnancy, even when the courts inevitably find this six-week ban unconstitutional.

After weeks of ensuring constituents this abortion ban was not on the table for discussion this term, conservative lawmakers introduced and passed this 60-page bill in the midnight hours of Thursday night, in a closed Capitol, without any input from constituents. This anti-democratic act cannot go unprotested.

Six-week abortion bans, also commonly misrepresented as “heartbeat bills,” are a favorite of the anti-choice Religious Right, intended to outlaw abortion after an embryonic pulse (not heartbeat) can be detected (as early as five weeks). Most women do not even know they are pregnant that early, which is, of course, the point.

The bill codifies into law beliefs not based on science or morality, but on religion and so-called holy books. The Christian Right has been and remains the primary opponent to women’s reproductive rights. Indeed the “architect” of the “fetal heartbeat” bill runs an organization called “Faith2Action” which seeks to impose one religious viewpoint on all citizens.

Please take a moment and demand that Lee veto this bill. Regardless of the outcome, it is critical that he hears opposition to this measure from secular voices. Political offices keep a record of calls and emails received in support or opposition of each bill. Even when the Religious Right has a grip on political offices, it is critical that we don’t let them falsely claim a mandate on issues like this.


Freedom From Religion Foundation

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