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1/18/19: Abortion Rights; Government Shutdown


The Florida Capitol complex in Tallahassee is pictured

Florida may be the next battleground state over abortion rights. With six weeks until the start of the Legislative session, a new proposal has been filed that would ban abortions if a doctor detects a fetal heartbeat.

It would require a doctor to tell a woman wanting an abortion if the fetus has a heartbeat and show it to her or have her listen to it. The woman could decide not to, but would have to do so in writing. If a doctor performed the abortion, it would be a third-degree felony. The legislation also removes the word fetus from the legal definition of abortion and replaces it with “unborn human baby.”

As a candidate, Governor Ron DeSantis said he would sign a fetal heartbeat bill banning abortions. This effort comes as the Florida Supreme Court has two new Republican-appointed members and the U.S. Supreme Court has a conservative majority.

We took a closer look at what this could mean for access to abortion in Florida with Caroline Corbin, a Constitutional law professor at the University of Miami School of Law; and Alice Ollstein, a Health Care Reporter on Capitol Hill for POLITICO.

The Partial Government Shutdown’s Impact on Floridians

Thousands of Floridians are working without paychecks right now, due to the partial government shutdown. They are federal government workers for the Coast Guard, TSA and the National Weather Service, among others. We spoke with David Goodhue, a reporter with FLKeysNews.com, about the situation.

Photo used under Creative Commons license.

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Matthew Peddie

About Matthew Peddie

Host of WMFE's Intersection & Assistant News Director

Matthew Peddie grew up in New Zealand and studied journalism at the University of Western Ontario. After graduating with an MA in Journalism he returned to Christchurch, working as a reporter for Radio Live and Radio New Zealand. He’s reported live from the scene of earthquakes, criminal trials and rugby ... Read Full Bio »