Let’s see if we can help the lawmakers in the state of Nebraska figure this one out. A person is undocumented if they came to this country with no legal permission to do so. A person is a citizen if they were either born within the boundaries of the U.S. territory or became naturalized through a due process. But – and hold your hats because this is where the Nebraska folks are having a bit of a fit – what if we’re talking about the unborn child of an undocumented mother. Does it have rights beginning at the moment of birth? If so, are those rights a matter of geographic luck? And what are its rights in the interim? Would they be the same as the mother’s?
The Nebraska lawmakers are grappling over a law that would provide prenatal care for the undocumented. It sounds simple enough, but the idea drags with it all manner of tangential issues like immigration and abortion and budget cuts and it’s a mess.
Fox News Latino reports:
Republican Gov. Dave Heineman (is) pushing hard against the proposal, even while noting his strong opposition to abortion. The Republican speaker of the Legislature, Mike Flood, has taken the opposite position, supporting the measure while stating that he has always been against illegal immigration.
It’s a matter of weight in an issues balance. What’s more important, abortion or immigration? The health of the unborn or sovereignty of the U.S. borders?
Flood, the Republican Speaker of the House, sponsored the bill and says that the health of the unborn is more important than immigration. Heineman, the Republican Governor, says it’s about immigration.
“Nobody wants to see a baby suffer. Nobody wants to see a baby come into this world who has issues — none of us do,” said Ogallala Sen. Ken Schilz. “But on the other side of that, there is an absolute cost to all of this, and that cost has to be borne by someone.”
The bill would:
extend coverage to an estimated 1,162 fetuses each year at a cost of $650,000 in state money and $1.9 million in federal tax dollars.
The way the Nebraska system works, three votes are required to pass this particular piece of legislation. The bill has already been passed twice, one final vote remains.
[Phot by micklpickl]