Planned Parenthood supporters rally against personhood bill at the statehouse

COLUMBIA, S.C. (WOLO)- Dozens of women came to the statehouse Tuesday to speak out against a senate bill that would outlaw abortion.

Planned Parenthood supporters say this bill would ban way more than just abortions but senators say that’s not the purpose of the bill at all.

“The primary purpose of the bill is to protect human life from it’s natural beginning which is fertilization until it’s natural death. I think the bill accomplishes that as it is written and amended and I certainly support it and hope to see it go forward to the floor,” said Anderson Senator Richard Cash.
Those against the bill say it imposes limits on women’s health measures that could be life changing. In the past, some have said adding specifics like protecting the mother when her life is at risk would make the bill more attractive but some say even that would not make it better.
“There’s nothing that will make that bill better. It bans birth control, it would make IVF almost impossible and it makes all abortions illegal. There’s nothing good in that bill and there is no way to make it better, not for women. It might make those legislators happy,” said Vicki Ringer of Planned Parenthood South Atlantic.

Though opponents say the bill will limit access to some forms of birth control, Senator Richard Cash said that is not true. “The Personhood Bill specifically says that nothing in the bill shall prohibit contraception, which is the prevention of fertilization or conception. So I don’t know how anyone can read anything into that other than what it says,” Cash said.

Senator Cash and other sponsors are optimistic about getting the bill to pass but others say debating it is a lost cause.

“This bill has been introduced for 20 years in a row, and we see these shenanigans every year, introduced and introduced and wasting our time on bills instead of really dealing with issues that can really improve and effect the lives of South Carolinians,” said Eme Crawford of the Women’s Right to Empowerment Network (WREN).

The bill received favorable report in senate judiciary committee last month.