State Rep. Charles Van Zant, R-Palatka, says that Republican gubernatorial candidate Ricks Scott would ban abortion in Florida and is a strong anti-choice advocate. Van Zant, who was elected to the legislature in 2008, is an architect and a Baptist minister.
In February, he filed House Bill 1097, co-sponsored by Republican House members Chris Dorworth, Brad Drake, Mike Horner, Scott Plakon, Ronald Renuart and John Tobia. The bill died on April 30 in the Criminal & Civil Justice Policy Council committee.
A summary for the “Florida for Life Act” says that it “prohibits induced abortions; prohibits operation of facility for purpose of providing abortion services; prohibits termination of pregnancy unless specified conditions are met; requires consent, provides exception; provides standard of care if fetus is viable; provides that woman’s life is superior to concern for life of fetus.”
According to this summary, H.B. 1097 “repeals provisions relating to termination of pregnancies & abortion referral or counseling agencies” and “requires statewide list of attorneys providing pro bono adoption services for women with unwanted pregnancies who would have selected abortion, if lawful, rather than adoption.”
In May of this year, Van Zant voted to support H.B. 1143, which would have imposed a required pre-abortion ultrasound for women seeking an abortion in Florida. Gov. Charlie Crist vetoed this bill after it was approved by the legislature.
Neither law is an exception in the Florida legislature. NARAL Pro-Choice America shows that Florida laws restricting abortion outnumber pro-choice laws.
NARAL indicates that
Florida has unconstitutional and unenforceable criminal bans on abortion; requires women seeking abortion services to counseling requirements; allows certain individuals or entities to refuse to provide women specific reproductive-health services, information, or referrals; restricts low-income women’s access to abortion; restricts young women’s access to abortion services by mandating parental notice; subjects abortion providers to burdensome restrictions not applied to other medical professionals.