HB 1673 was the fourth bill to come up for a vote this session which would have repealed or completely destroyed New Hampshire’s first protections for the preborn in decades. In an impressive series of actions last week, the House fended off the bill aimed at the heart of the Fetal Life Protection Act, then incorporated a floor amendment before passing it in a form that actually strengthened the Act by defining its ultrasound parameters. HB 1673, in its newly-amended version supported by Cornerstone, will now go on to the Senate for consideration.
HB 1673 was the second destructive bill aimed at the FLPA to come out of the Republican-led House Judiciary Committee and was initially an outright repeal of the Fetal Life Protection Act. It mirrored an identical Senate bill, SB 399. As with SB 399, lawmakers were successful in turning the bill from a destructive one to one that reiterates the language and intent of the Fetal Life Protection Act.
How House lawmakers were able to come together to protect the FLPA is a testament to prayer and persistence on the part of many. In an evening vote, the House first successfully voted down a committee-amended version of HB 1673 that, while appearing to be a compromise on the surface, would have irreparably harmed the Fetal Life Protection Act. As first amended, it would have entirely gutted the FLPA by removing all enforcement mechanisms from the law—as well as adding an open-ended exception that would make abortionists the final word on when abortions can occur.
The House defeated this version of the bill on Thursday in a razor-thin 165-163 vote. The vote occurred late in the evening, and many Republicans were absent, contributing to the narrow margin.
Immediately following, in a voice vote, the House passed an amendment proposed by a minority of the Judiciary Committee—using language originally introduced by Rep. Matt Simon—which instead protects the FLPA by reiterating and further clarifying the limited scope of the law’s ultrasound requirement.
Cornerstone is grateful to all the Republicans who voted to protect New Hampshire’s six-month abortion ban—no Democrats did so—and especially for the fearless leadership of representatives Matt Simon, Jeanine Notter, Erica Layon, and Kurt Wuelper, among others, on the House floor and during the Judiciary process. Please express your appreciation to your Republican representatives who voted for the bill, and especially to these key leaders for their bold, Christlike example. The roll call can be found here.
Please also thank and encourage representatives Bill Boyd, Oliver Ford, and Andrew Prout—who we were pleasantly surprised to see voting to defend the six-month abortion ban. We are grateful to representatives Boyd, Ford, and Prout for listening to their constituents.
We are also thankful for the support House GOP leadership provided in defeating this bill. We hope that GOP leaders will continue to move in the right direction. However, if the FLPA is to survive multiple attacks this session, it is important to continue to call on House GOP leaders to intervene in the House Judiciary Committee.
Under the leadership of pro-abortion Republican Ned Gordon—appointed by state GOP leadership—the Republican-led Judiciary Committee, instead of defending the values of their constituents and platform, has instead introduced their own extreme pro-abortion legislation, forcing us to use our precious resources to fend off attacks from legislators who should be working with us, not against us.