“Idaho Code defines a fetus as a human and says killing a human is murder, abortion is in contradiction to the inalienable rights recognized in the Idaho Constitution, and the State of Idaho has the authority to nullify federal laws that would allow abortions.”
Frequently Asked Questions
Why does the AHRA treat abortion as murder in statute?
The underlying principle behind the AHRA is to apply equity in law. Idaho law already says killing human beings, including embryos and fetuses, with malice aforethought, is murder (Idaho Code 18-4001). Our law also says that all in utero babies have rights as persons when it comes to law (Idaho Code 32-102). The Idaho Constitution Article I Section 1, which is the highest law in Idaho, recognizes an inalienable right to life, to defend life and to secure safety.
There are numerous inmates serving long sentences, including life sentences, at the Idaho Department of Corrections, for killing preborn human beings. But, we currently have a prohibition of prosecution for murder in our law that allows mothers, and people they authorize and hire, to kill their own preborn children (Idaho Code 18-4016). That partiality is inequity and violates the Idaho Constitution's provisions for equity and justice in Article I, Sections 2 and 18.
The AHRA provides a legal remedy that speaks to the issue of why abortion is wrong – that it actually is murder.
Would all Idaho abortions be prosecuted as murder after the AHRA passes?
Not necessarily. According to US and Idaho law, there is 'prosecutorial discretion'. It would be up to prosecutors to weigh each individual case and its circumstances and evidence and make decisions as to whether to file any charges and for what violation of law. The result is that there would likely be a wide variety of prosecutorial decisions regarding any abortions that occur after the law passes.
Is the goal of the AHRA to punish and imprison women for abortions?
Not at all. The goal of the AHRA is to end abortion in Idaho by passing a law that addresses the reason abortion is wrong with sufficient penalties that the law would be a real deterrent to criminal behavior. Our expectation is that businesses that perform abortions in Idaho would not provide those services after the AHRA goes into effect. We expect that while there are currently 1,300 abortions in Idaho each year, most of those would vanish, and the abortion rate, if any, would be significantly reduced.
What about Idaho women who go out of state to procure abortions after the AHRA passes?
When the AHRA goes into effect, its jurisdiction only applies to the territory of the state of Idaho. Idaho law is only binding on conduct and offenses that occur within our state lines.
What about Roe v. Wade and other federal court cases?
The goal of the AHRA is not to test the decision in Roe v. Wade. The AHRA is to nullify that court opinion by exercising the state's legitimate interest in enforcing its own murder laws and protecting all Idahoans, including the preborn. By oath, state officers are bound to uphold the constitutions of Idaho and the United States, and while the Roe court found a 'right' to privacy for mothers to kill preborn children in the 14th amendment's due process clause, courts sometimes make the wrong decisions, and it is the duty of the executive and legislative branches and the state versus the federal government to act as a check and balance of a truly unlawful, and frankly tyrannical, court opinion. The United States federal government was formed by the states and not the other way around, and the American Revolution that overturned the monarchy of King George was not for the purpose of forming a judicial oligarchy to replace the monarchy.
What about exceptions for rape and incest?
While rape is a horrible crime, and we have compassion for women who are the victims of rape, the abortion human rights act recognizes that babies have fundamental human rights regardless of the crimes of their fathers. It would be unjust and uncivil to allow a baby to pay death penalty for the crime of its father. Murder is never the just solution to a rape.
What about abortion for medical reasons like ectopic pregnancy or if the woman's life or health are in danger?
The AHRA makes a crime only the intentional killing of a preborn child. The ethical approach by the medical industry is that in a critical care situation, both mother and baby are treated as patients, and whatever is medically possible to save both should be attempted. The concept of triage is that when there are multiple patients and limited abilities and resources, the patient with the most critical need and reasonable possibility of success may be prioritized. As an aside, by the time ectopic pregnancies are diagnosed, almost always the baby is already deceased, and thus treatment of ectopic pregnancy is not considered an abortion. In fact, in any legitimate medical emergency, no mother goes to an abortionist, she already goes to a hospital or other legitimate medical and surgical facility.
Would mothers who got abortions before the AHRA goes into effect get prosecuted?
No, the AHRA contains a specific provision that there is no retroactive punishment for abortions that occur before the effective date of the new law. But also, the US and Idaho Constitutions also prohibit retroactive punishment, and it would not be fair to punish someone for an act they were told by the state was legal to do at the time.
Would the AHRA impact 'birth control'?
Contraceptive birth control prevents conception, so the AHRA would have no applicability. But, taking as an example the modern birth control pill – while it is almost always contraceptive, it has the possibility of causing a fertilized egg (after conception), to not attach to the uterine wall, thus ending the life of the baby and the pregnancy. Even this would likely never come under the jurisdiction of the AHRA. For one thing, the mother using the birth control pill probably thinks it is always contraceptive and does not have the 'intent' to kill necessary to fall under the AHRA. As well, how does she know a life existed and that a death occurred, much less a prosecutor, and what would be the evidence that a prosecutor could bring to a jury and convince them beyond a reasonable doubt? The AHRA's goal is to end the visible abortion industry in Idaho, not to end contraceptive birth control.