American politician tied in knots over 'biblical' defence of abortion bans

4 May 2022, 19:31

OK state representative tied in knots over 'biblical' reasoning for abortion criminalisation

By Seán Hickey

An Oklahoma state representative was left stuttering and stumbling after Tom Swarbrick quizzed him on the state's attitude towards abortion, and how it relates to their practising of the death penalty.

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On Monday, the American state of Oklahoma passed legislation restricting abortions after leaked documents from the US Supreme Court suggested there will be a rowing back on safeguarding for abortions at a Federal level.

"We want to be a voice for those who do not have a voice", Representative Jim Olsen of the Oklahoma House of Representatives told Tom Swarbrick.

"We want to ban abortion because a baby has a right to life" he explained, telling Tom the intention is to ban abortions from "the moment of conception" onwards.

Read more: What is the Roe V Wade abortion law and why does it affect abortion rights?

Read more: Biden vows to 'protect women's right to choose' as US bids to overturn abortion laws

"What life is had by a foetus at the moment of conception?" Tom wondered, to which the Republican member stated "that life has it's own unique DNA and it's going to further develop in the womb."

"It's a dangerous road to go down to say 'my life is worth living but some other life is not equal to mine and is not worth living', it is best and wisest to say that we respect and honour all life."

Tom took up Rep. Olsen on his comment, asking whether Oklahoma has the death penalty.

Roe v Wade repeal could lead to nationwide abortion ban

After Rep Olsen confirmed his state does execute some serious offenders, Tom stated "that's people therefore making a judgement on the value of the life of other human beings?"

"We do that based ultimately on the Bible" the politician said in defence.

"Why aren't you advocating, if all human life is equal and all has value, to get rid of the death penalty?" Tom asked, before Rep Olsen clarified that "all innocent life has equal value."

Rep Olsen went on to suggest "probably 15 or 20" states could criminalise abortion if Roe v Wade was overturned.

"To what extent would that be more American to you?" Tom asked. Rep Olsen said that it may not be more American, but "it is more biblical to respect the life of the innocent."

"The lord is against the slaughter of innocents."

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