01:36 - Source: CNN
Abortion wasn't always taboo in America
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The Alabama House, with an eye on challenging the US Supreme Court’s decision in Roe v. Wade, has passed a bill that, if signed into law, would criminalize abortion.

HB 314, which passed the GOP-controlled House on Tuesday in a 74-3 vote, would make abortion a Class A felony, which carries a maximum prison sentence of 99 years, and attempted abortion a Class C felony, which holds a sentence of up to 10 years in prison.

All Republicans voted in favor of the bill, except for two who didn’t vote. Nearly all Democratic House members chose not to vote, walking out of the House chamber in protest.

Republican state Rep. Terri Collins, the bill’s sponsor, said when she introduced the bill last month that the measure would provide “a vehicle to revisit the constitutionally-flawed Roe v. Wade decision,” WKRG reported.

CNN has reached out to Collins’ office.

The bill does not include exceptions for rape or incest, despite House Minority Leader Anthony Daniels, a Democrat, having offered an amendment Tuesday to include such exceptions.

Assistant Minority Leader Merika Coleman, who is also a Democrat, proposed an amendment that would use the salaries of Alabama lawmakers who vote in favor of HB 314 to foot the bill for any costs and expenses incurred by the state related to any legal challenge.

“Roe v. Wade is the supreme law of the land. Because it is, we already know that this piece of legislation is going to be deemed unconstitutional,” Coleman said in a press conference on Tuesday.

Both amendments from Democratic leadership were tabled Tuesday.

HB 314 will now move to the Senate, where Republicans also hold a majority. A companion bill, SB 211, was introduced in the Senate last month, but committee action on the bill is still pending.

Senate President Pro Tempore Del Marsh, who is a Republican, said last week that he’s always held the “position on any pro-life bill that you have to take consideration of rape, incest and the health of the mother,” the Montgomery Advertiser reported.

“I’ve got a little bit of a problem and I want to talk to the sponsor and understand where this direction is,” Marsh said, according to the newspaper.

Lori Jhons, a spokeswoman for Republican Gov. Kay Ivey, declined to indicate whether the governor would sign the bill if it reaches her desk.

The American Civil Liberties Union of Alabama said it hopes the Senate will be “more reasonable” and not pass the bill, but made clear it intends to sue if the bill progresses.

“We are disappointed that the Alabama House passed HB314 despite the fact it would criminalize abortion and interfere with a woman’s personal, private medical decisions,” the group said in a statement.

“It is unfortunate that members of the House are putting their personal beliefs ahead of what’s in the best interest of our state. The people of Alabama are paying the bill for unconstitutional legislation and we hope that the Senate members will realize its detrimental impact and stop this bill from becoming law. Otherwise it will be challenged in federal court.”

Alabama passed a constitutional amendment with 61% of votes in November that would restrict abortion access.

The Alabama House bill joins other legislation in different states that seek to ban abortions when doctors can detect a heartbeat.

This story has been updated.