Pro-Life Groups Oppose New Effort from Planned Parenthood to Make Abortion a “Constitutional Right” in Wisconsin

Today, Wisconsin Right to Life, Wisconsin Family Action, and Pro-Life Wisconsin joined together to block Planned Parenthood of Wisconsin’s pursuit to find a right to abortion in the Wisconsin Constitution. They are being represented by The Wisconsin Institute for Law & Liberty (WILL) and the Thomas More Society. 

There is no right to abortion in the Wisconsin Constitution, and it is the role of Wisconsin’s elected legislature to create policy on abortion.

All three pro-life organizations have been working for years to offer alternatives to abortion and help Wisconsin women make life-affirming decisions. 

In response, Heather Weininger, Executive Director of Wisconsin Right to Life stated, “We celebrate the overturning of Roe v. Wade and the opportunity to address the question of life at a state level through our elected state legislature. While we as pro-life advocates are fighting for protections for preborn children and their mothers, radical pro-abortion providers are trying to bypass the legislative process and weaponize the court system to enshrine abortion access on demand. They are putting the lives of Wisconsin’s most vulnerable at risk.”

Christine File, President of Wisconsin Family Action stated, “Planned Parenthood invites the Wisconsin Supreme Court to flout Dobbs, usurp the state legislature’s role to create law, and ‘find’ a novel constitutional right to abortion. Wisconsin’s history and law has protected women and pre-born babies since before statehood. The purpose of government is to secure rights, including the foundational human right to life. Scientifically, it is undeniable that there are two lives at stake here: the woman’s and the pre-born baby’s. The Supreme Court is not the proper venue to create health and safety law nor the proper mechanism to add a constitutional amendment. The legislature is the proper body to weigh the policy considerations and create law, not the Court.”

Dan Miller, State Director at Pro-Life Wisconsin stated, “Finding a right to abortion in our state constitution, where there clearly is none, would be the most extreme form of legislating from the bench. Tens of thousands of lives are at stake. All our common-sense pro-life laws, including an ultrasound requirement and 24-hour waiting period, that protect women and their preborn children would likely fall. The U.S. Supreme Court has already ruled in Dobbs that there is no federal constitutional right to abortion. Nothing in Wisconsin’s constitution or the history of our state would remotely suggest such a right. We implore the Wisconsin Supreme Court to reject Planned Parenthood’s radical and self-serving plans.”

# # #

Media Contacts:

Heather Weininger, Wisconsin Right to Life, Executive Director 
hweininger@wrtl.org (414) 778-5780 

Christine File, Wisconsin Family Action, President 
cfile@wifamilyaction.org (608) 268-5074 

Dan Miller, Pro-Life Wisconsin, State Director 
Dan.M@ProLifeWI.org (262) 796-1111 Ext. 111

A Person’s A Person No Matter How Small

A Person’s A Person No Matter How Small

In Dr. Seuss’s book Horton Hears a Who!, we read, “A person’s a person no matter how small.” Little did Theodore Seuss Geisel know how poignant his words would become over the next decades. Dr. Seuss clearly wasn’t making a political statement about abortion, but what he expressed is profoundly biologically accurate.

The moment a human egg is fertilized, a human person is formed—a human person distinctly different from his or her biological mother—right down to distinct DNA. Yes, a person’s a person no matter how small.

That reality played into the news this week here in Wisconsin and around the country. Last week, the Alabama Supreme Court handed down a decision in a case involving in vitro fertilization that seemingly set the world on fire. Much of the firestorm is because people don’t understand what happens with in vitro fertilization. Typically, in this process, many eggs are fertilized creating many embryos. Only a few embryos are implanted in the woman using this process. The embryos that are not implanted are usually frozen. If they are not used or adopted in a certain amount of time, they are destroyed.

The Alabama case focused on whether someone responsible for destroying some of these frozen embryos could be held liable under the state’s Wrongful Death of a Minor law. In this instance, someone had wandered into the room where these frozen embryos were stored and removed several, ultimately dropping them, which in the wording of the majority opinion author, “killed them.”

Bear in mind that these tiny human persons were the developing children of identified couples. The couples bringing the lawsuit alleged their minor children were killed. The high court agreed, ruling that the state’s Wrongful Death of a Minor Act “applies on its face to all unborn children, without limitation.” The majority opinion also stated, “Unborn children are ‘children’ under the Act, without exception based on developmental stage, physical location, or any other ancillary characteristics,” meaning the fact that these embryos were not implanted did not make them less human.

Essentially what the Alabama high court said was a person’s a person no matter how small and no matter whether that person is in utero or in a frozen suspended state.

Some are saying this ruling means IVF will be deemed illegal in Alabama and perhaps elsewhere if other courts follow suit. That’s not what this decision says. What it says is you cannot destroy these tiny humans with impunity. We have long said every embryo—every tiny human— created in the IVF process must be implanted and given the opportunity to grow and develop. Creating excess embryos to freeze them and then most likely destroy them is wrong. You don’t have to stop doing IVF, but it must be done ethically.

Then, here in Wisconsin, Planned Parenthood of Wisconsin announced last week that they have petitioned the Wisconsin Supreme Court to, in their words, “clarify” whether our State Constitution provides an unfettered right to abortion, apparently right up to birth. Planned Parenthood says our Constitution’s Declaration of Life, Section I, includes a right of “self-determination,” meaning women have a right to decide if they want to carry to term their tiny unborn human baby.

That section includes language declaring people “have certain inherent rights; among these are life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness.” It appears Planned Parenthood takes the “self-determination” idea from “the pursuit of happiness,” conveniently ignoring the first inherent right—life. Tragically, the abortion giant has never acknowledged that a person is a person no matter how small, and now wants our state’s highest court to agree with them.

Rounding out last week on the life issue here, another abortion facility, one that has been shuttered since Roe was overturned, is reopening on March 5, putting our state back to where we were with abortion before the Dobbs decision.

Societies that do not operate by the biological reality that a person’s a person no matter how small are on a disastrous, destructive path—especially when you consider that at the moment of conception, a tiny human is bearing the image of God.

 

Celebrating Sanctity of Human Life Month

Celebrating Sanctity of Human Life Month

The US Supreme Court overturned Roe v. Wade in June 2022, but protecting human life remains a top priority for pro-life organizations and individuals in Wisconsin, especially since Planned Parenthood has resumed abortions here. Dane County District Court Judge Diane Schlipper ruled on the case brought by Wisconsin Attorney General Josh Kaul (D) alleging that Wisconsin’s pre-Roe abortion statute, 940.04, is not enforceable. Schlipper says the law doesn’t apply to consensual abortion, but rather to feticide, the non-consensual killing of a preborn baby. Many of us fail to see how she arrived at that decision since the section is labeled “Abortion,” and if nothing else, the exception for the life of the mother makes it clear that the statute applies to consensual abortion. Nevertheless, for now, the intentional, consensual killing of an unborn child is again legal in Wisconsin.

Thanks to the overturning of Roe v. Wade, 14 states in the U.S. have implemented laws that prohibit or significantly restrict abortions. According to the data available, these enforceable pro-life laws are projected to potentially eliminate around 200,000 abortions annually. However, this still leaves hundreds of thousands of babies at risk. As Christians and pro-lifers, our job is not over until abortion is unthinkable in our country and every child is safe in his or her mother’s womb. 

Commemorating Sanctity of Human Life Month in January is a good way to highlight this issue. January was officially designated as Sanctity of Human Life Month in 1984 by then-President Ronald Reagan. This year, Sanctity of Human Life Sunday is on January 21. Wisconsin Family Council urges churches to preach on life and pro-lifers to recommit to robustly and persistently defending life this month and every month. 

We are dedicated to doing everything we can to strengthen, preserve, and promote human life from conception through natural death. We believe in the power of prayer, action, and education to bring about change. When churches teach and preach on the issue, so many people gain a clear understanding and then use their personal influence to help others advance the pro-life cause.

In addition, to safeguard the lives of the unborn, we need to not only expose the harsh realities of abortion but also offer support to local pregnancy care organizations that consistently provide hope and life-affirming messages to women and families. By promoting a culture that celebrates life, we can counter the false narrative pushed by the left and present alternatives that affirm the value of both mother and child. It’s about creating a community where life is not just protected by law but cherished and supported in practice. 

To this end, Choose Life Wisconsin recently distributed almost $30,000 to eight Wisconsin pregnancy care centers to help with their amazing pro-life work. These funds are raised from the sale of the Choose Life Wisconsin license plate. To date, Choose Life Wisconsin has awarded over $308,000 to more than 30 pregnancy care centers in our state.

Recently, a coffee company dedicated to the pro-life cause donated nearly $300,000 to pregnancy resource centers across the country, assisting them in their role as a “shield and protector” for expectant mothers. 

These funding efforts come at a time when some centers are facing challenges in funding and operational capabilities in certain states.

Seven Weeks Coffee takes its name from the developmental stage at which a preborn baby is about the size of a coffee bean. The company is committed to supporting the work of pro-life pregnancy centers, which offer a range of free services and counseling to pregnant women and their families. To aid these centers, Seven Weeks Coffee donates 10% of its coffee sales revenue. Choosing to spend money at places like this, rather than progressive companies that explicitly support abortion, or to purchase a Choose Life Wisconsin license plate are small but impactful ways we can all help foster a culture of life. 

Further, we must extend radical love and compassion to expectant mothers facing challenging circumstances. Churches and their congregations should actively support women and men vulnerable to choosing abortion by contributing to crisis pregnancy centers, directly assisting mothers in need, or simply being present for those experiencing hardship.

Finally, a key part of defending the sanctity of life in Wisconsin is to elect leaders who will boldly protect preborn life and prevent the left from advancing their radical pro-choice agenda. President Joe Biden has urged Congress to establish a federal legal “right” to abortion. This action aims not only to reinstate but also to broaden the scope of Roe v. Wade by prohibiting states from enacting almost all pro-life legislation. The outcome of the 2024 elections will be crucial in deciding whether the Democrats maintain control of the White House and secure sufficient congressional seats to achieve this despicable objective. 

This fall presents a chance to vote for Christ-centered leaders who will fiercely defend life at all stages. It’s vital to participate in the upcoming election and to encourage others who share these beliefs to do the same.

May our efforts honor the sanctity of human life, not just in words, but through our individual actions, including our vote, and in the laws that govern our state and nation.

An Update On Our Offices’ Firebombing Case—Culprit Pleads Guilty

An Update On Our Offices’ Firebombing Case—Culprit Pleads Guilty

Some days are just emblazoned in our memories. One of those days for me is May 8th, 2022, Mother’s Day. I was at church early that morning to help get ready for a ladies’ brunch happening at 9 a.m. At 7:45 or so, I received a call from one of our team members telling me I needed to immediately call the folks who manage our office building because we had had a “break-in.” I quickly dialed building management and was told we’d had more than a break-in. I was told we had been firebombed and had a fire started in our office and that graffiti had been written on two of the building’s outside walls near our office. I immediately left church with another one of our team members, with a quick stop by my home, only to find that the Watertown police were looking for me because the Madison police hadn’t been able to locate me. After verifying who I was, I was told to get to Madison as soon as possible and to call the Madison Police Department en route. I did so. Interestingly, the Madison PD wouldn’t tell me what the graffiti said.

As we drove by the front of the building at the office, I saw the message on one wall: “If abortions aren’t safe, then you aren’t either.” On another wall was what we later learned were anarchist and anti-law enforcement symbols. The reason we were attacked was unmistakable.

We entered the building to an acrid odor and found it came from our office, all the way at the end of the hall—at least 150 feet away. Walking into the office, we found the receptionist area a mess from firefighters who had arrived to put out the fire. Then I saw that my personal office had been the point of the attack. Windows broken, glass everywhere, furniture destroyed, books burned, a segment of wall burned away, disarray everywhere—and horrible air, even to the point of making it hard to breathe. Later I’d learn that the air in my office was not just bad, it was truly toxic and no one should have been in there! Meanwhile, I’d given countless interviews standing or sitting in the middle of the destruction for at least two days!  

Needless to say, such a day is permanently embedded in my memory. That day, FBI agents were in the office, along with an ATF agent, and at least two Madison Police Department officers—one a detective. When they left with physical evidence late that afternoon, they told me work on the case would begin immediately, but it might take several months for anything of significance to happen. That proved to be true. It wasn’t until March of this year, that I was told that an arrest in our case was imminent—thanks to graffiti that had been written on a sidewalk near the state capitol—in a handwriting style that matched the one used on our walls. After several weeks of work, law enforcement recovered a half-eaten burrito left by the suspect and extracted DNA from the refuse. That DNA matched one set of DNA taken from the physical evidence gathered at my office. Shortly thereafter, police arrested Hridindu Sankar Roychowdhury in Boston getting ready to board a plane to Guatemala, using a one-way ticket. 

Seriously! This is the kind of thing you see in an NCIS episode! Mr. Roychowdhury was charged with attempting to cause damage through the use of fire or an explosive device and was eventually extradited to Wisconsin where he was put first in jail and then in a federal prison.

Fast-forward to the Monday before Thanksgiving. The US Attorney’s office handling this case filed a signed Plea Agreement with the Western District Wisconsin Federal Court. Mr. Roychowdhury was scheduled to actually plead guilty before federal Judge William Conley on Friday, December 1, 2023, at 1 p.m. Shortly before 1 p.m., I entered the courtroom and sat down. Shortly after, a sergeant-at-arms told me I’d probably be more comfortable moving to the other side of the gallery. I had sat directly behind where Mr. Roychowdhury would be sitting with his attorneys. I obliged and sat behind the detective handling our case and an FBI agent who had made the arrest. Eventually, the other side filled up with the accused’s friends and family members (interestingly, all wearing masks).

Eventually, Mr. Roychowdhury was escorted in wearing an orange jumpsuit, but in no way restrained. I watched him for a long time. His demeanor throughout the process of the judge asking him a whole series of questions was calm, self-assured, and perhaps a bit smug and arrogant. I don’t know if he recognized me or not, although he looked my way several times. I couldn’t help but wonder how he got caught up in all this radicalization and violence, and I pondered how his life will be different because of this crime.

This 29-year-old from India (now apparently a US citizen) did plead guilty and took responsibility for the crime. The judge told him very clearly the law requires a minimum of five years of incarceration with a maximum of 20and that the judge would ultimately determine his sentence and hand it down on February 14th, 2024. He will get some consideration for accepting responsibility, but the judge cannot give him less than five years. He could also be fined and required to pay restitution for damages. As I’ve said many times, we are not looking for revenge or retribution, just justice under the law.

This arrest and guilty plea is, as far as we know, the first in the nation as it relates to the series of attacks targeting pro-life organizations and churches that happened after the leaked draft of the Dobbs U.S. Supreme Court decision suggested that Roe v. Wade would soon be overturned.

It’s taken longer than anyone thought it would to reach this point in the firebombing of our office, but I believe justice is being served at this point, and I trust this will be encouraging to other pro-life organizations and churches that have endured similar attacks.

You, our friends, have prayed for us, financially supported us, and encouraged us as we have walked this very different path. Thank you! The case is still open because we believe there are more suspects yet to be identified and apprehended. So this attack remains very much on our minds as we continue to work with law enforcement. Your prayers and ongoing support are such a blessing and so necessary as we continue, in partnership with you, to show up, stand up, and speak up for LIFE in Wisconsin. We will keep you posted as this story continues! 

Critical Updates On Recent State Elections And Implications for WI

Critical Updates On Recent State Elections And Implications for WI

While we did not have any elections here in our state last week, several states had some really significant elections. Of prime importance, Ohio voters weighed in on two ballot initiatives. One of the referenda ensconces a right to abortion in the state’s constitution, and the other legalizes recreational marijuana. Unfortunately, both proposals passed.

The abortion proposal passed 56%-44%. The referenda stated that individuals will have the “right to make and carry out one’s own reproductive decisions.” My counterpart in Ohio—my friend Aaron Baehr—who worked hard to defeat the amendment and provided leadership for a pro-life coalition, made some important points about the heartbreaking loss.

The statement from Protect Women Ohio said, in part, “Our hearts are broken tonight not because we lost an election, but because Ohio families, women and children will bear the brunt of this vote. When Michigan voters passed a similar amendment last year, they were sold the lie that parental rights would be unaffected, that late-term abortion would remain illegal, and that women’s health and safety standards would not be touched. But just last week, the Michigan legislature voted to repeal penalties for partial-birth abortions, to eliminate health and safety protections at abortion facilities, and they called parental consent laws ‘unconstitutional.’ They even vowed to come for informed consent laws and 24-hour waiting periods next. We know the same barbaric attacks on parents and children are now coming home to Ohio.”

They went on to say that as pro-lifers, they will not quit—which is encouraging to be sure. But I want to note what this statement points out about Michigan because it is very telling. Voters in Michigan were told one thing about abortion regulations if they passed a “right to abortion” amendment, but yet the pro-abortion advocates are never satisfied. They want abortion any time, for any or no reason—truly abortion on demand. Ohio pro-lifers recognize that this could easily happen in their state with this so-called “right to abortion” now in their constitution.

So how does this relate to Wisconsin? Remember that lawsuit challenging whether our pre-Roe law is enforceable? That lawsuit is still in Dane County Circuit Court—but it will eventually move from that court and go either to the appellate court and then to the state Supreme Court, or the appellate court could send it directly to the state Supreme Court.

Most observers believe one way or another, this case will land at our state Supreme Court, which now leans liberal by a 4-3 margin. And of course, new Justice Janet Protaciewicz made it very clear in her campaign that she supports what she called “reproductive rights” for women—which is a euphemism, and a bad one, for abortion.

When this case gets to our state Supreme Court, it wouldn’t take a great deal of legal maneuvering for our court to create a “right to abortion” in our state constitution. And then, like Michigan, it would not be long before serious challenges will come, probably via the courts, against our abortion regulations, like the 20-week abortion ban, the ultrasound requirement, the 24-hour waiting period, parental permission, and others—all of which are designed to protect women and their unborn children.

As I have said and will continue to say, elections have very real consequences—and sometimes those consequences are literally life and death.

Regardless of what happens with our pre-Roe law here in Wisconsin, WFA and WFC, in full partnership with you, will continue to relentlessly fight for the dignity of every preborn child and advocate for the support of every woman facing a crisis pregnancy. Thank you for all you do to promote a culture of life in our state!

Parents Must Prioritize Worldview Development

Parents Must Prioritize Worldview Development

Speaking recently at Family Research Council’s Pray Vote Stand event, researcher George Barna attributed our societal problems to a transition from a biblical worldview to alternative philosophies.

Christian post reports that Barna contends parents err in prioritizing “academic achievement, emotional happiness, and good health” over “worldview development,” and wanting their children to be a “good person” as opposed to being a disciple of Christ. Currently, Barna says, “less than 1 percent of adolescents and teens are on track to have a biblical worldview.” This means our world is in desperate need of true disciples.

Barna notes that a disciple is not simply someone who believes in God, but rather is someone who follows Jesus’ teachings and adheres to His commandments. Doing so requires us to be counter-cultural. A disciple’s life should look radically different from those around him, and will almost certainly involve some level of cultural challenge or even persecution.

It’s not wrong to want children to do well in school, be emotionally and physically healthy, or be a good person. But they should first and foremost be disciples who see the world through the lens of Scripture. Without a biblical worldview, children will ultimately struggle in every area because such a worldview grounds them and prepares them for discerning true from false, good from evil, and right from wrong. This calls for intentional, purposeful parenting.

A crucial part of instilling a biblical worldview in our children, especially in our modern culture, is teaching them what the Bible has to say about the value of life.

For example, Jeremiah 1:5 says, “Before I formed you in the womb I knew you, and before you were born I consecrated you; I appointed you a prophet to the nations.” Similarly, Isaiah 49:1 says, “The Lord called me from the womb, from the body of my mother he named my name.” Lastly, the sixth commandment forbids the direct and intentional killing of another person.

God makes it very clear. Christianity and abortion are entirely incompatible. 

Unfortunately, we are now living in a state where innocent lives are once again being taken under the guise of “healthcare.” Planned Parenthood of Wisconsin resumed abortions yesterday in Madison and Milwaukee. The Associated Press reports that appointments at the Milwaukee clinic were completely filled within 24 hours of Planned Parenthood announcing that it would resume abortions, despite the fact that our state’s pre-Roe abortion ban is still in place. (Our press release in response to PPWI’s illegal, life-taking decision is available HERE.)

The good news is that this battle is far from over. Please pray for our judicial system and all those involved. As Christians, we are called to do everything in our power to end abortion in Wisconsin. Doing so will require that we raise up the next generation to be disciples of Christ who see life, from the moment of conception, through a biblical worldview.

Let’s Talk Leadership!

Let’s Talk Leadership!

Iowa Governor Kim Reynolds signed a law last Friday banning most abortions after a baby’s heartbeat can be detected, just weeks after the Iowa Supreme Court blocked a similar law. The bill signing took place at The Family Leadership Summit, a gathering of nearly 2,000 faith-based conservatives organized by The Family Leader, a state family policy council in Iowa. The governor told the sold-out crowd, “the most important human rights cause of our time [is] protecting unborn human lives from the atrocity of abortion.”

“All life is precious and worthy of the protection of our laws,” Reynolds added. “Everyone understands that a heartbeat signifies life, and we understand that when it falls silent, something precious has been lost.”

Reynolds also acknowledged with gratitude who was in the audience— pro-life activists, saying, “You have lifted us in prayer, grounded me in God’s Word, and reminded me that He is always in control.”

I was privileged to be at that event and to meet Governor Reynolds. The crowd went crazy in applause for the governor and for the at least 50 pro-life legislators flanked her as she signed this bill. 

One of the other speakers at the Summit was Pastor Alistair Begg who did a session on the importance of having a biblical worldview. As he wrapped up his remarks, he gave three words that he said should characterize leaders: integrity, bravery, and humility. 

From what I can discern about Governor Kim Reynolds, especially after listening to numerous Iowans who actually know her quite well, she epitomizes these characteristics. Because of her, people like me have “governor envy,” as we consider what Wisconsin could be like if we had leaders anywhere in our government who were people of integrity, bravery, and humility. 

These are leaders who do the right thing, at the right time, in the right way, for the right reason, even if no one is watching— that’s integrity. Such leaders have the courage of their convictions and are willing to do hard things in the face of adversity because doing right is always good and right. 

Leaders in every walk of life who exhibit integrity, bravery, and humility are rare indeed, and the world is starved for them. We are doing all we can to help develop these types of leaders this week during our LEAD Wisconsin teen worldview and leadership camp. 

At LEAD Wisconsin, 125 teens are undergoing biblical worldview training and are having opportunities to develop leadership skills, all while being encouraged in word and example to be people who have integrity and who are brave and humble.

Who knows? Maybe from this week of LEAD Wisconsin will one day come another Kim Reynolds who will lead a state, business, church, or school well for the glory of God and the good of the people they are leading. We work and pray to that end.

Wisconsin Family Action Responds to Dane County Judge’s Ruling on WI’s pre-Roe abortion ban

Wisconsin Family Action Responds to Dane County Court Judge Ruling on Wisconsin’s
Pre-Roe Abortion Ban

MADISON – Today, Dane County Judge Diane Schlipper determined that the court case challenging Wisconsin’s pre-Roe law will continue rather than be dismissed.

Last December, Sheboygan County District Attorney Joel Urmanski filed a brief asking the court to dismiss this case that Wisconsin Attorney General Josh Kaul filed last year just days after the US Supreme Court overturned Roe v. Wade in its Dobbs decision.

Wisconsin Family Action president Julaine Appling responded to today’s court decision.

“While we are certainly disappointed that the judge did not dismiss this case, we are hardly surprised. We have all along believed those advocating for abortion at basically any time in a pregnancy wanted this case to go to the state Supreme Court—but not until after August 1, when Justice-elect Janet Protaciewicz is seated on the court, changing the ideological balance from 4-3 conservative to 4-3 liberal. When campaigning, Justice-elect Protaciewicz made it abundantly clear that she is pro-abortion.

“Judge Schlipper used some telling language in her decision, saying that the pre-Roe law, Chapter 940.04, doesn’t apply to abortion, but rather only to the practice of feticide. We completely disagree. The title of the section of the state statutes where 940.04 is located is ‘Abortion” and (1) of 940.04 clearly states “intentionally destroys the life of an unborn child.” Feticide is commonly defined as abortion.

For years abortion advocates in our state have been trying to revoke this statute, arguing that when Roe was in effect, that the statute was superfluous. They also knew it would be enforceable in the event that Roe was eventually overturned, which is what motivated their ongoing efforts. The statute bans the killing of an unborn baby unless the mother’s life is endangered.

“Activist judges at all levels of our judicial system will obviously find creative ways to interpret this law. This too is not surprising. We will now watch as this case moves through that system, and pro-life Wisconsin citizens will be watching and listening closely to see who the truly independent, rule-of-law, originalist jurists are in the courts where this lawsuit is being and will be handled.

“Regardless of any decision by any court, Wisconsin Family Action will continue to be as aggressive as possible in defense of the unborn in Wisconsin as well as caring for mothers who are in crisis pregnancies. Both are worthy of and in need of help and compassion.”

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Wisconsin Family Action, Inc. is a statewide organization engaged in strengthening, preserving, and promoting marriage, family, life, and religious freedom in Wisconsin.

Pro-life Groups Invest Millions in Supreme Court Election, Backing Justice Kelly

Pro-life Groups Invest Millions in Supreme Court Election, Backing Justice Kelly

The upcoming Wisconsin Supreme Court race is breaking campaign spending records. Outside groups have donated millions of dollars in what is already the most expensive supreme court race in the history of not just Wisconsin, but the nation. Candidates and outside groups have already spent over $20 million in television and radio ads alone, and we have a week to go. While much of the donations are in support of pro-abortion candidate Janet Protasiewicz, WFA-backed candidate Daniel Kelly is receiving significant support from pro-life groups. 

Women Speak Out PAC, a partner of Susan B. Anthony Pro-Life America, has committed $2 million to support Justice Daniel Kelly.

The donation will help pay for canvassing, digital ads, and a statewide TV spot, highlighting No Jail Janet’s soft-on-crime record.

In a press release, Women Speak Out PAC’s Director of State Public Affairs Kelsey Pritchard is urging voters to turn out in support of Kelly, as Wisconsin’s abortion ban is on the line. 

“Janet Protasiewicz has a horrific record on crime with a history of being soft on sex offenders. Someone with her dangerous lack of judgment should not be entrusted with the responsibilities of a state Supreme Court justice.”

“Based on the statements Protasiewicz has made throughout this campaign,” she continued “the Constitution and the laws won’t stop her from ruling based on the whims of her own flawed judgment in order to carry out Planned Parenthood’s agenda to eliminate parental rights for the sake of abortion on demand.”

Pritchard is right. Wisconsin’s abortion ban will go before the court, and whoever comes out on top on April 4th will likely be the fourth vote in support of life or abortion. 

“The abortion industry couldn’t be more enthusiastic about Protasiewicz,” said CatholicVote Communications Director Joshua Mercer. “And they couldn’t hate Judge [sic] Dan Kelly more. But they’re absolutely right when they talk about how important this election is. [Christians] in Wisconsin absolutely have to get out and vote on April 4. It sounds hokey, but it’s more undeniable in this election than just about any other in my lifetime: lives depend on your vote.”

Wisconsin Family Action (WFA) is also backing Kelly with an election campaign. WFA recently launched a $225,000 election campaign.   

WFA’s targeted, statewide, multi-media express advocacy campaign encourages Wisconsin voters to vote and to vote for Kelly. The express advocacy ads educate voters about the judicial philosophy of each candidate and seek to motivate them to cast their ballots accordingly. 

Thankfully, other pro-life groups have joined us in supporting Kelly, who is endorsed by all three pro-life groups in Wisconsin. WFA, Pro-Life Wisconsin, and Wisconsin Right to Life are all urging pro-lifers to elect Kelly, pointing to his outstanding track record of judicial conservatism, clearly showing he is not a judicial activist seeking to make law from the bench.

As Christians and pro-lifers, we have a duty to do everything in our power to elect the only candidate who will preserve the rule of law and respect the Constitution.

While not everyone can make financial contributions to this race, we all can play a role in electing Kelly by sharing the truth about the candidates and getting as many Christians to the polls as possible. Innocent lives depend on it. 

 

Wisconsin Republicans Aim to Add Unnecessary Exceptions to Wisconsin’s Abortion Ban

Wisconsin Republicans Aim to Add Unnecessary Exceptions to Wisconsin’s Abortion Ban

On March 15th, Assembly Speaker Robin Vos (R-Rochester) held a joint press conference to introduce legislation sponsored by State Senator Mary Felzkowski (R-Irma), and State Representative Donna Rozar (R-Marshfield). The proposed bill would allow abortions in certain cases to supposedly “save the life of the mother” or in the case of rape or incest. Every pro-lifer should oppose this legislation.

When the U.S. Supreme Court overturned Roe v. Wade last year, Wisconsin’s Statute 940.04 went into effect, making it illegal for a doctor to perform an abortion for any reason other than to save the life of the mother. 

The new proposed legislation would amend Wisconsin’s abortion ban so that it “does not apply to any pregnancy in the first trimester if the pregnancy is the result of sexual assault or incest.” 

It also modifies the definition of “to save the life of the mother” to mean any “serious risk of death of the pregnant woman or of substantial and irreversible physical impairment of a major bodily function of the woman” or any “circumstance in which the fetus has no chance of survival, including a physical condition of the fetus that makes survival of the fetus outside of the uterus not possible, an anembryonic pregnancy, an ectopic pregnancy, or a molar pregnancy.”

“A vote to add more exceptions to Wisconsin’s abortion ban is a vote to kill more preborn babies. It is that simple,” said Pro-Life Wisconsin legislative director Matt Sande in response to the proposed bill. 

“The fact is that legal abortion — the direct, intentional killing of a living preborn human being — is incapable of being justified. It is always and everywhere wrong, regardless of motivation or consequence. It may never be employed, even in the narrowest of circumstances, as a means to a greater end. It is incredibly disheartening that legislative Republicans are working to restore abortion to Wisconsin.”

Sande is right. The passage of this bill would certainly lead to an increase in abortions across the state, and in every case, the intentional killing of an innocent child is deeply immoral. Further, the language in the bill claiming that abortion is sometimes necessary to save the life of the mother is entirely false. 

“The bill mentions three specific circumstances,” said WFA President Julaine Appling, “all three of which are either not pregnancies at all or are already recognized as medically necessary to save the life of the mother. Anembryonic pregnancy and molar pregnancy are circumstances where there is no embryo or fetus; so obviously, it cannot be an abortion. Ectopic pregnancy is a life-threatening condition that requires emergency treatment. In all three of these cases, there is no current law that would prohibit a physician from providing the necessary medical care.”

Read Julaine’s full statement here.

Healthcare workers should always respect and care for both lives. Often, both the mother and the baby can be saved. 

It is possible that the child may be harmed as an unintentional side effect of treating the mother. While this is incredibly tragic, it is not considered an abortion, and therefore not a violation of Wisconsin’s Statute 940.04. 

In cases of rape and incest, the child who is conceived is just as valuable as any other child. The child’s “wantedness” or circumstances of conception do not determine his or her worth. Rather, a child’s worth comes from the fact that each and every person is made in the image and likeness of God. Further, the solution to one injustice is never another injustice. Killing a child will not remedy the trauma that the mother endured. It will only add to it. 

Lastly, the proposed exceptions would only empower sexual predators. “The problem with this legislation is that it punishes the innocent unborn child while making it easier for the perpetrator, the real guilty party in this situation, to hide his crime. Abortion is often used to cover up crimes from sex-trafficking to rape. Additionally, and very importantly, the legislation does not require any documentation or police record that an actual sexual assault took place,” noted Appling.

Abortion is not healthcare. In fact, it’s the opposite. “Healthcare” that ends one life and traumatizes another is never “safe,” despite what the left wants us to believe. 

Passage of this bill will only lead to legalizing abortion again in Wisconsin. Pray that this bill is defeated and that robust protections remain in place for the unborn in Wisconsin. Governor Evers shortly after the press conference, sent a message that he will veto the bill because it doesn’t go far enough. Senate Majority Leader Devin LeMahieu (R-Oostburg) issued a statement saying the bill will not receive a vote in the Senate. Contact your state legislators and ask them to protect all preborn life in Wisconsin. You can look up your state legislators and their contact information by clicking here.

OB-GYN group refutes major abortion lies in new fact sheet

OB-GYN group refutes major abortion lies in new fact sheet

Since the overturning of Roe v. Wade, the abortion industry has ruthlessly sought to sell lies about abortion, including continuing to claim this gruesome, life-taking, elective procedure is healthcare. Abortion advocates erroneously claim that restricting abortion prevents women from receiving the care that they need.[1] This is a vicious lie meant to present the intentional murder of an innocent life as “healthcare,” when in reality, abortion is never medically necessary. 

Thankfully, the American Association of Pro-Life Obstetricians and Gynecologists (AAPLOG), which represents 7,000 pro-life medical professionals, is combatting these lies with a new point-by-point fact sheet. 

Lifesite News recently reported on this document, , Myth vs. Fact: Correcting Misinformation on Maternal Medical Care, which refutes the American College of Obstetricians & Gynecologists’ (ACOG) claim that “providing comprehensive medical care” means “working to ensure that all patients can access the full spectrum of maternal, sexual, and reproductive health care options, including abortion.” (Emphasis added.)

AAPLOG first states that ACOG “has actively opposed doctors who do not agree with the group’s radical positions, and it refuses to represent the diversity of professional views in the OB/GYN community as a whole” while “ignoring the wealth of evidence showing significant harms to women from abortion, such as adverse mental health outcomes and an increased risk of preterm birth in future pregnancies.”

Second, it refutes the American Medical Association’s (AMA’s) claim that the overturning of Roe v. Wade was an “egregious” government intrusion into the medical field by noting that abortionists “often have no previous relationship with their patients and tend to leave the medical care afterwards to other physicians who either have a prior relationship with the patient or who work in her local emergency room.” Further, the mother and child are both patients that need to be considered.

One of the most common misconceptions coming from the left is that abortion is sometimes necessary to save a mother’s life, and that restricting abortion would prevent the treatment of miscarriages and ectopic pregnancies. In reality, the tragic passing of a child as a side effect of treating a medical condition of the mother is not an abortion and these treatments are not classified as such. The intentional killing of an unborn child is never necessary to save the life of the mother.

AAPLOG says that “93% of practicing OB/GYNs do not perform elective abortions but have always been able to offer life-saving treatment to women and will continue to be able to do so regardless of state laws on abortion,” and that “[a]ny competent OB/GYN physician is trained to make this determination well before the threat to the mother’s life progresses to the point where death is imminent.”

Further, the treatments used for miscarriage and other complications are not prohibited by abortion restrictions. “An ectopic pregnancy requires removing an embryo to save a mother’s life so that both lives are not lost. This life-saving treatment is not prevented by any current law restricting or banning abortion,” writes the AAPLOG. A recent article by Mary Szoch, the Director of the Center for Human Dignity at Family Research Council, further clarifies the course of action with an ectopic pregnancy:

“Whatever the treatment plan, in an ectopic pregnancy, the intention of the doctors is always to save the life of the mother, not to kill the child. In 90% of ectopic pregnancies…the unborn child has died prior to the discovery that the pregnancy is ectopic. In cases where the embryo is still alive, the surgery to save the mother’s life may result in the death of the child, but unlike in an abortion, the procedure itself is not intended to — and does not — directly kill the child. Importantly, the mother’s life is saved by the separation of the unborn child from the place of implantation outside the uterus — not by the death of the embryo.”

The AAPLOG fact sheet also notes that in addition to intentionally killing a child, abortion is dangerous for the mother. “The Institute of Medicine lists surgical abortion as an immutable risk factor for preterm birth,” AAPLOG says. “Women face a 35% increased risk of preterm birth in a future pregnancy after one surgical abortion and an almost 90% increase in preterm birth risk after two abortions.”

Finally, AAPLOG highlights the mental and emotional burden that abortion places on women. “From 1993 to 2018, there are at least 75 studies examining the link between abortion and mental health,” the fact sheet says. “Two-thirds of those studies showed a correlation between abortion and adverse mental health outcomes.”

Ultimately, healthcare is meant to prolong human life and resolve diseases and ailments. In contrast, abortion is an assault on a woman and a death sentence to her child.

Further, pregnancy is not a disease, but a natural, biological process. Intentionally ending that process is never a necessary part of treatment for the mother. In fact, it only causes her more harm.

Pro-lifers need to be prepared to combat the lies being spewed by the left in their dishonest attempt to protect abortion access. We urge everyone to read this document. Knowing these facts equips pro-lifers to respond to the untruths and myths, which can ultimately save lives.

[1]On Friday, September 3, 2022, the US Department of Veterans Affairs, under the direction of the Biden administration, issued an “interim rule” that takes effect immediately. This rule offers pregnant women veterans an abortion if the pregnancy is the result of rape or incest or puts the woman’s life or health at risk. From p.3 of the “rule’: “VA is taking this action because it has determined that providing access to abortion-related medical services is needed to protect the lives and health of veterans.”

Life after Roe in Wisconsin

Life after Roe in Wisconsin

The anticipation is over. Nationally and in Wisconsin, we are turning a page on the abortion issue. All you have to do is read the last few lines on the first page of the two-hundred-plus page opinion to know the essence of what the US Supreme Court decided: “Held: The Constitution does not confer a right to abortion; Roe and Casey are overruled; and the authority to regulate abortion is returned to the people and their elected representatives.”

Those are powerful, long-awaited words—and we praise God for His goodness and grace to us in giving us this decision.

To clarify, overruling Roe and the 1992 Casey decision that affirmed a woman’s so-called “right to an abortion” means that each state now must deal with the issue as was the case before the Supreme Court concocted a “right” to abortion in 1973.

Wisconsin is one of a dozen states that has a pre‑Roe law on the books. Ours dates back to 1849, one year after we became a state. This law criminalizes most abortions in our state, with one exception—the “life of the mother,” which isn’t clearly defined in the law. For many years, pro-life citizens and organizations have worked hard to keep this law on the books for this exact time.

Nothing prevents this law from right now being enforceable. Apparently, Planned Parenthood of Wisconsin also believes that because within hours of the decision being released last Friday, the state’s largest abortion provider quit doing abortions at its three abortion-providing facilities.

But nothing about this issue is simple, largely because of entrenched worldviews and political aspirations. Months ago, Democrat Wisconsin Attorney General Josh Kaul announced he would not enforce the law if Roe were overturned. In recent days, he’s reiterated that position.

Additionally, a number of county district attorneys have said they won’t bring changes against someone who violates the law. And over the weekend, Governor Tony Evers announced that he will give clemency to any doctor charged with breaking the 173-year-old law, which means, in essence, he’s pardoning criminals in advance of their being sentenced.

In addition to all this, Governor Evers (D) asked, and Attorney General Josh Kaul (D) was happy to comply, that a lawsuit be filed challenging the enforceability of the law. Obviously, enforcement of this abortion ban isn’t a slam-dunk.

Further, the left is going to use the overturning of Roe to energize their base for this fall’s election. They want to keep Evers as governor and Kaul as AG and flip both the Assembly and Senate from Republican majorities to Democrat. If that happens, the 1849 abortion ban will be gone by late January.

For years, Democrats in the state legislature have been introducing bills to get rid of every abortion regulation we have—24-hour waiting period, woman’s right to know, 20-week abortion ban, ultrasound requirement, telemedicine ban and more. The surest way to have abortion on demand in our state is a sweeping liberal victory in November. The money was already coming in to accomplish that prior to the Dobbs decision. As wonderful as that decision is, it added fuel to the liberals’ zeal.

The foregoing doesn’t have to happen. We can remain a state where human life is protected. It will take commitment and work.

We need to foster a culture of life by practicing radical love and compassion toward expecting mothers who are in difficult situations. Churches and their members need to offer help and hope to abortion-vulnerable women and men by donating to crisis pregnancy centers, giving directly to mothers in need, or simply walking with those who are hurting.

We must also speak the truth in love about the unborn. Debates surrounding this issue will become more intense, and pro-lifers need to be equipped with the facts and prepared to defend the sanctity of life at all times.

Lastly, the surest way to keep the pro-life momentum going in Wisconsin is by electing the right leaders this fall. We have an opportunity to ensure that Christ-centered representatives lead our state in the right direction and protect life by voting in this year’s upcoming election and encouraging like-minded people to join us.

We’ve been given a gift; now we must protect it.

 

WI Democrats react to Dobbs leak

WI Democrats react to Dobbs leak

Earlier this week, Politico dropped a bombshell by publishing a leaked draft of an early decision in the Dobbs Supreme Court case.

In an opinion dated February 10, 2022, Justice Alito writes, “We hold that Roe and Casey must be overruled.” Boom! With those nine words, the liberals’ became unhinged in our state and across the country. 

Unsurprisingly, Wisconsin Democrats expressed their outrage and made egregious demands in response. 

Gov. Tony Evers announced on Twitter that he is urging Congress to take action to combat the Court’s potential decision. “Today, I’m leading a coalition of 17 governors to call on Congress to immediately protect access to abortion and reproductive rights. We cannot wait for #SCOTUS to overturn #RoeVWade. We need action now, and we need to pass the #WHPA,” he tweeted. 

WHPA is the so-called “Women’s Health Protection Act.” Of course, abortion is not health care for either women or their unborn babies.

Once again, Evers is ignoring the will of the Wisconsin people. He is removing power from voters in order to perpetuate the most violent and evil human rights violation of our lifetime. 

Wisconsin Lt. Governor Mandela Barnes, a Democrat who is running for US Senate this cycle, released a similar statement, saying, “It has never been more clear why we need to abolish the [US Senate]filibuster and take immediate action to protect every person’s right to make decisions about their own bodies. Republicans have proven they will stop at nothing to strip every individual of their right to an abortion. We must act now.”

Both of these supposed “leaders” erroneously deem abortion a “right.”  And Barnes isn’t even willing to use the word woman. Instead, he refers to “every person’s right” and “every individual of their right to an abortion.” 

Topping all this off, Wisconsin Attorney General Josh Kaul blatantly said this week if Roe is overturned, that “[a]s long as [he’s] attorney general, we will not be using any resources” to enforce Wisconsin’s pre-Roe law that criminalizes most abortions—a law we have successfully kept on the books since 1849. Kaul, a Democrat, is up for re-election this fall. Enforcing and upholding Wisconsin law is the main job of our attorney general. 

The left is denying reality in a number of ways. While refusing to properly define a woman, they fail to recognize that murder is objectively evil and that the right to life is the only right that exists in this case. Simply calling something a right does not make it one, and no one has the right to kill an innocent child. 

President Biden also joined the conversation and further revealed the moral depravity of the left: “So, the idea that we’re going to make a judgment that is going to say that no one can make the judgment to choose to abort a child based on a decision by the Supreme Court … goes way overboard,” said Biden during a press conference about the potential overturning of Roe v. Wade. (Emphasis added.)

Probably without realizing it, Biden admits in his statement that abortion ends the life of a child, yet he is still in favor of it. It seems the task at hand now is no longer to convince the left that children in the womb are in fact children, but that murder of innocent life is always wrong. This is what happens when we remove God, the only source of objective truth and morality, from our culture. 

We need leaders who will honor their commitment to serving their constituents. It’s clear that Evers, Barnes, and Biden are far more concerned with their own ideologies and pacifying their base than respecting traditional legal processes or the will of the people, not to mention respecting the lives of unborn children.  

If Roe v. Wade is overturned, control over abortion laws will simply return to the states, giving the people a greater voice. If our leaders truly cared about our constitutional republic and the principles of federalism, they would support the overturning of Roe

This fall we have an opportunity to have a say in Wisconsin about what kind of leadership we have in our governor, lieutenant governor, and attorney general. Will we replace the current pro-abortion office holders with pro-life, pro-women individuals? That’s up to us and our willingness to get involved in really meaningful ways – that includes voting, but also going beyond our personal vote to engage many others.

What’s in California Won’t Stay in California

What’s in California Won’t Stay in California

The California legislature recently introduced AB 2223, a radical bill that would essentially legalize infanticide. 

The legislation protects mothers from being charged for any “actions or omissions” related to her pregnancy, which include “miscarriage, stillbirth, or abortion, or perinatal death.” The definition of “perinatal death” typically includes the death of babies seven days or older. 

In other words, the bill legalizes the killing of babies born alive under basically any circumstances. It also shields anyone who “aids or assists a pregnant person in exercising” this “right” from just consequences. 

This is morally abhorrent and downright evil. A society that permits murder has succumbed completely to nihilism and the forces of darkness. 

“For years, pro-life advocates have argued there is no moral difference between ending a child’s life days before birth or days after birth. California’s pro-abortion legislators now seemingly agree,” said Jonathan Keller, President of California Family Council. “A political culture that justifies killing millions of children in the womb is now declaring open season on unwanted newborns. Every Californian must oppose this heinous bill.”

The bill has had two hearings in Assembly committees and passed last week in the Assembly Health Committee on an 11-3 vote. Soon it will head to Assembly Appropriations and then go to the Assembly floor. 

While this bill is specific to California, it will inevitably impact Wisconsin. The policies and ideas that come from California won’t stay there. What policymakers do in one state influences elected officials everywhere. 

A bill like this is really only one election away in Wisconsin because elections have consequences—sometimes even life and death consequences. Laws really do matter. 

As progressives in California continue to push the line on pro-abortion extremism, Democrats in Wisconsin will attempt to keep up and do the same. If we don’t take action, evil ideas about the sanctity of life will soon make their way to our state. 

What’s kept a bill like this from becoming law in Wisconsin is conservative majorities in both the Assembly and Senate. However, Governor Evers would certainly sign such a bill if it ever reached his desk. If the state legislature ever flips from conservative to liberal while we have a liberal governor in office,we are in trouble, especially if this bill is already law in California. 

This is why all Christians must be involved in politics, remain informed, and vote in a way that honors God. We need to be keenly aware of what the candidates stands for and hold them accountable for what they say they believe. The cost of our ignorance or inaction may be the lives of innocent children. 

Let’s keep dangerous legislation like California’s AB 2223 out of Wisconsin by making our voices heard in this year’s fall election. It’s time to elect leaders who will fight back against the moral depravity of the left and who understand, at a minimum, that all human life deserves protection from the moment of conception on.

Please pray that AB 2223 is defeated in California and that all life from the moment of conception is finally respected as a sacred creation of God, bearing His image..

Birth rates are falling

For the fifth year in a row, China’s birth rate has dropped significantly. It hit a record low in 2021, of only 7.5 births per every 1,000 people. This rate is barely enough to outnumber deaths. 

National Bureau of Statistics head Ning Jizhe said the decrease in births is a result of “a decrease in the number of women of childbearing age, a continued decline in fertility, changes in attitudes toward childbearing and delays of marriage by young people.”

For years, the Communist government forced women to abort all children after their first under China’s one-child policy. Now, the government is feverishly releasing propaganda and passing laws to encourage families to have more children, realizing that its one-child policy led to a shrinking workforce and economic decline. 

The Chinese government’s view of children is what we must avoid in the United States. 

Having children and expanding families should always be encouraged. It’s healthy for individuals and society as a whole. 

While we don’t have to deal with the same roadblocks in the U.S. that have existed in China, our birth rate has also declined significantly over the last several decades. In 2020, the country saw 56 births per 1,000 women, which is the lowest birth rate ever recorded in the U.S. Since the 1960s, the birth rate has decreased by about half.  

The birth rate in Wisconsin is not any better than that of the rest of the country. Wisconsin has been below replacement birth-rate since 1974. The replacement birth-rate is 2.1 children for each woman of child-bearing age. That number doesn’t grow a population; it just holds it even.

Birth rates are incredibly important, as they reveal a lot about the health of a community. They often reflect a society’s view of marriage and family or a population’s fertility rate. A high birth rate also helps sustain a growing economy and a high standard of living. 

The falling birth rate in America and Wisconsin’s decades-old low birth rate can be attributed to a number of things. First, women are prioritizing things such as education and careers more than ever before, meaning they are getting married later in life. On average, women are having their first child at the age of 27, a stark increase from the average age of 23 in 2010.

Abortion has also undoubtedly affected the birth rate in the U.S. Every year, well over 600,000 children are stripped of the right to life in the U.S. 

Not only does abortion end the lives of pre-born children, it also alters our view of children. Our culture tells us that babies are disposable and without inherent value. As a result, our society simply doesn’t prioritize family life. 

Restoring a healthy birth rate will require a shift in our culture. We need men and women to recognize the value of marriage and of life and the lasting fulfillment that having children provides

We must avoid the situation that China has gotten itself into. While legislation typically follows the culture, some legislation can help with at least one contributor to the falling birth-rate. 

WFA is supporting Senate Bill 923, which would prohibit abortions after a heartbeat can be detected. If this bill were to become law, we would essentially stop the vast majority of abortions in our state. Meanwhile, we await a US Supreme Court decision on Dobbs, the case that many believe will, at a minimum, roll-back Roe v. Wade, and return the issue of abortion to the states (and Wisconsin still has in place its statute that criminalizes most abortions).

All life is sacred and a high birth rate is an indicator of a healthy society. Please pray that men and women in Wisconsin recognize the importance of marrying and having children and will re-prioritize family life.

Take action: contact your legislators and ask them to support SB 923! (Simply put your address in the top search bar to locate your legislators.)

The Wisconsin Heartbeat Bill, SB 923

The Senate yesterday held a hearing on Senate Bill 923, a crucial piece of pro-life legislation that Wisconsin Family Action is excited to support. Read our testimony HERE. (We do have one issue with this bill—an unnecessary exception. See our testimony to read more about that.)

The Wisconsin Heartbeat Bill prohibits abortion after a baby’s heartbeat is detected and ultimately aims to highlight the humanity of every child in the womb. The heartbeat can usually be detected at around six weeks gestation.

This bill is much like the Heartbeat Bill that recently became law in Texas. Our bill contains the same provision as the Texas law that allows ordinary citizens to sue the provider if they have proof that the provider has violated the heartbeat law. 

Wisconsin currently has four free-standing abortion facilities; two in Milwaukee, one in Madison and a new facility in Sheboygan. These providers are subject to an ultrasound law, which requires abortion providers to show patients an ultrasound of their baby before they perform an abortion. We also have a 20-week abortion ban in place.

While these are great starts, it’s vital that we respect and protect life as early as possible, which means at least banning abortion after a heartbeat is detected. It’s abundantly clear that an unborn child with a heartbeat is fully human (and we believe this is true from the moment of conception).

Texas Right to Life estimates that between 10,000 and 13,000 preborn human babies have been saved since the heartbeat law went into effect on September 1, 2021. They estimate the law is saving at least 100 lives every day.

CNBC reported that Texas’ heartbeat bill has effectively stopped most abortions in the state by empowering citizens to sue anyone who “aids or abets” an abortion after a heartbeat is detected for at least $10,000. This is a monumental achievement for the pro-life movement in Texas that we now have the opportunity to accomplish in Wisconsin.

Unfortunately, Texas’ ban has faced many legal challenges. It’s currently the matter of at least one lawsuit. The US Supreme Court ruled in December to allow a federal lawsuit by abortion providers against Texas’ heartbeat bill to proceed. Thankfully, the bill has remained in effect while its constitutionality is being challenged.

If Senate Bill 923 is passed, we expect to face similar legal challenges. However, saving just one life would be worth it; and we know that this bill can save thousands.

We are also hopeful that the Supreme Court will soon overturn Roe v. Wade, which would certainly help mitigate any legal challenges we may face in implementing this life-saving law. And actually, if Roe is overturned, then this bill is unnecessary.

The heartbeat is universally accepted as an indicator of life, yet we don’t apply this principle to the unborn. It’s time to change that.

Please contact your state senator and state representative (put your address in the search area at the top right) and urge them to support Senate Bill 923. Please also pray for the success of this bill and for our state and nation to finally recognize the humanity of the unborn.