The following is a letter sent to members of the South Carolina General Assembly:

Dear House Speaker Smith and Senate Leader Massey, 

South Carolina has historically prioritized the protection of preborn lives. As the United States Supreme Court wrote in Dobbs v. Jackson Women’s Health Organization, “[i]t is time to heed the Constitution and return the issue of abortion to the people’s elected representatives.” The Supreme Court recognized that states have an interest in the “respect for and preservation of prenatal life at all stages of development [and] the protection of maternal health and safety.” 

South Carolina has the authority to create and enforce laws that improve the health and welfare of its citizens, including the youngest members of the human family. It has made significant efforts to further its legitimate interest in protecting life in the past, but now is the time for abortion to finally come to an end in the Palmetto State. 

There are currently two bills before the House and Senate: H. 3774, the Human Life Protection Act, and S. 474, the Heartbeat Bill. Together, these bills create a two-step plan to protect preborn children in South Carolina. Both are valuable and both should be passed this session. 

H. 3774, which is based on a model drafted by Americans United for Life, abolishes at conception all elective induced abortions, which by definition excludes those procedures necessary to save the life of the mother. It prohibits the intentional destruction of preborn children—full and complete members of the human family—and protects the mother from the harmful consequences of abortion violence, which include both emotional and physical harms. 

S. 474 abolishes abortion at six weeks except in cases of rape or incest. In these cases, abortion is prohibited if the unborn child is twelve weeks or older. There are thorough reporting standards included to ensure these horrific crimes are referred to appropriate law enforcement authorities. This bill is informed by medical science that shows the growth of the unborn child and promotes full disclosure to the mother on the progress of her unborn child’s development. Additionally, S. 474 challenges the South Carolina Supreme Court’s flawed reasoning in Planned Parenthood South Atlantic v. State of South Carolina, and presents an opportunity to overturn the egregiously wrong decision. 

Both bills before you have our full support. The members of the General Assembly must work together and pass these bills to finally make South Carolina a state where all are welcomed in life and protected in law.