Utah's abortion bill gets toned down

The controversial measure no longer equates "reckless" miscarriages with murder

Published March 5, 2010 12:01PM (EST)

Oh, how I love starting a Friday with some good news: The anti-abortion bill that would make miscarriage murder in Utah has been withdrawn by its sponsor for a revision that will make it "narrower in its scope," the New York Times reports. Representative Carl D. Wimmer is cutting the particularly troublesome clause that criminalizes any "reckless act" of a pregnant woman that leads to the death of her fetus. As Mary Elizabeth Williams recently wrote in Broadsheet, that particular language meant that "if you're not being a fully responsible baby incubator -- even if you're so early along you don't know you're pregnant -- and you lose the fetus, you could potentially find yourself up on a murder charge," and facing a life sentence. But, no more -- thanks in large part, I suspect, to the backlash by the pro-choice community.

Unfortunately, language criminalizing "intentional" acts that result in a lost pregnancy will still remain. So, while it's great to do away with the "reckless" clause, it doesn't change the fact that this is fundamentally an anti-abortion bill.

By Tracy Clark-Flory

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