Last week, the Kentucky legislature sent a series of bills to the desk of the state’s Democratic governor, Andy Beshear. Yesterday, Beshear vetoed six of the seven. On the seventh — a measure to protect infants born alive after abortion procedures — he declined to take any action.
As ten days had passed since the bill arrived on the governor’s desk, in the absence of either a veto or a signature from Beshear, the bill became law. Beshear was widely expected to veto the born-alive bill; last spring, he vetoed a nearly identical piece of legislation, so his choice not to do so again is a welcome surprise for pro-lifers.
Despite assertions to the contrary from abortion advocates, the law places no limits on abortion procedures. Rather, it prohibits health-care professionals from depriving born-alive infants of nourishment for any reason, including that the infant “was born with a disability” or “is not wanted by the parent or guardian.”
The born-alive measure also forbids denying such infants “medically appropriate and reasonable medical care, medical treatment, or surgical care,” and it requires physicians who perform abortions to “take all medically appropriate and reasonable steps to preserve the life and health of a born-alive infant.”