Statement from Rep. Bourne on the Signing of the Reproductive Health Act

LITCHFIELD- Today, Governor Pritzker signed into law legislation expanding abortions in Illinois. State Representative Avery Bourne (R-Raymond), led the debate against this legislation when the Illinois House of Representatives voted on it on May 28th. After the signing today, Bourne released this statement: 

“When Governor Pritzker took office he promised to make Illinois the most progressive state in the nation on abortion. Unfortunately, today he followed through on that promise and signed in to law legislation that will mean a massive expansion of late term abortions in Illinois. This extreme legislation repeals a number of important safety prohibitions and regulations, putting mothers and viable unborn babies at risk. The bill further removes any rights for unborn babies and establishes abortion as a fundamental right. This extreme expansion is out of step with the beliefs of a majority of Illinoisans. Proponents of this bill dishonestly sold this bill as a way to keep abortions legal in Illinois if Roe v. Wade is overturned, however, this legislation does so much more than that. Illinois is now one of the most radical states for abortion access. Today is a win for the abortion industry, and a devastating loss for Illinois and the rights of all unborn babies.

The legislation, Senate Bill 25 (SB 25), referred to by proponents as the “Reproductive Health Act,” eliminates all legal protections for unborn babies. The legislation states, “A fertilized egg, embryo, or fetus does not have independent rights under the laws of this State.” The legislation also states that those who become pregnant have a “fundamental right” to an abortion. The “fundamental right” status prohibits state interference with abortion, which will likely nullify the parental notification statute for abortions performed on minors.

SB 25 removes criminal penalties against a doctor who performs an abortion when there is a reasonable possibility of survival of the child outside the womb. SB 25 provides for an overly broad and expansive definition of “fetal viability,” which will allow for late-term abortions under certain circumstances. The legislation repeals the Illinois Abortion Law of 1975, the Abortion Performance Refusal Act, and the Partial-Birth Abortion Ban Act. SB 25 also requires certain private insurance companies to cover abortion services.