Birth Certificate Bill Stalls on Abortion Rights
Sen. Abel Maldonado (R-Santa Maria) has one week to modify provisions of a bill (SB 850) seeking to authorize the state to issue a "certificate of birth resulting in stillbirth" after members of the Senate Health Committee on Wednesday debated implications of the bill, the San Francisco Chronicle reports.
Maldonado said the bill is intended to help grieving parents cope following a stillbirth, but abortion-rights advocates say it could lead to wider restrictions on the procedure if it defines a fetus as a person.
The California Medical Association also opposes the bill, saying that it could throw off the state's birth data.
Maldonado accepted the committee's offer of the week to amend the bill but said that he has reservations about its chances of winning approval in the Senate Health and Judiciary committees by April 27, the deadline for legislation to be forwarded to the Senate Appropriations Committee (Lelchuk, San Francisco Chronicle, 4/12).