SC House of Representatives
Columbia, SC – April 24, 2019
Transcript: Personhood Amendment Ruled Non-Germane to Incremental Child-Murder Regulation ‘Heartbeat‘ Bill by Republican Speaker Lucas and Republican Pro Tempore Pope on Point of Order – April 24, 2019
Pro-‘Abortion’ [ !!!??? ] SC Rep. Bamberg (D) offers Personhood Amendment to supplant (replace) all the language of H3020 ‘Heartbeat’ Bill with the language of H3920 Personhood Bill
Selectively Pro -‘ Abortion‘ SC Rep. Clary (R) raises Point of Order on Germaneness
Christians for Personhood:
Human Life begins at CONCEPTION NOT HEARTBEAT !!!
Note: The Republican-Super-Majority SC House passed H3020 Heartbeat Bill on Second Reading April 24 with the Mace rape and incest “ exceptions” Amendment. The Republican Speaker Lucas and Republican Pro Tempore Pope ruled out of order the Amendment offered by Pro-“Abortion” [ !!!??? ] Rep. Bamberg (D) to adopt the Personhood Amendment with the exact verbatim language of the 2019 Personhood Bill H3920 in place of all the language of the Incremental Child-Murder Regulation “ Heartbeat” Bill which bans NO “abortions” before heartbeat detected. H3020 was passed out of the SC House on Third Reading April 25, and the bill sent to SC Senate, where H3020 was assigned to Medical Affairs Committe April 25.
Excerpt from Transcript below:
Regarding proposed Bamberg Personhood Amendment to Heartbeat Bill [ which the Republican House Speaker and the Republican Speaker Pro Tempore rejected as non-germane, with no vote taken by the SC House on the Appeal that was made challenging the Speaker’s Ruling by Pro-Personhood Rep. Hill (R) ]:
Rep. Bamberg: I would, Mr. Speaker, I would definitely agree that the [Personhood] Amendment is broader-based, and I think affords more protections to the unborn fetuses. It does not specifically speak to the “abortion” procedure, because I think the language as it’s written, would effectively abolish all “abortions”. [emphasis, word “Personhood” added]
(Photo) ‘I AM A PERSON’ – 7 weeks from conception
Read (or listen and view below) the words of Pro-“Abortion” Rep. Bamberg (D) as he basically challenges the Republican Super-majority SC House to change “Heartbeat” Bill H3020 completely into the language of Personhood Bill H3920 !!!???
SC House: Personhood Amendment Ruled Non-Germane to Incremental Child-Murder Regulation ‘ Heartbeat‘ Bill by Republican Speaker Lucas and Republican Pro Tempore Pope on Point of Order – April 24, 2019
( AUDIO ) Rep. Bamberg (D) Amendment No. 2 ( Personhood Bill ) to H3020 Heartbeat Bill
Wednesday, April 24, 2019
Floor of SC House of Representatives, SC State House, Columbia, SC
[ Video available at SC Legislature Video Archives,
Wednesday, April 24, 2019 10:00 am
House of Representatives — House of Representatives – Part 2
Begin at Video time 33:40 ]
South Carolina Legislature – Archives – Video Archives
Wednesday, April 24, 2019 10:00 am
House of Representatives — House of Representatives – Part 2
Video – 2:59:07
[ BEGIN at Video time 33:40 ]
Speaker Lucas: All right, we’re on Amendment 2. Mr Bamberg is recognized on the Amendment.
Rep. Bamberg: Thank you, Mr. Speaker. This particular amendment, we’ve had ongoing debate here today and throughout committee with regards to “abortions”, and a lot of this stems from the discussion about when life begins, when life doesn’t begin, the science behind it, and there’s discussion with regards to constitutionality, and Roe v. Wade, and when a woman’s right to choose arises, and is there a viability.
This particular bill seeks to cut that down and go off a six-week time in which some say fetal heartbeats can be detected. What we are proposing in this particular amendment is to, in this State, end the discussion about when life begins, or what constitutes a [sic] unborn child, or what constitutes a fetus or embryo or a zygote. And we’ve heard time and time again about how important of an issue this is, and that’s one reason why, ya know, those of us have spoken on this, and there have been some heated debates and heated discussions. What this particular amendment does, effectively changes the bill that is before us, and some may refer to this as “personhood”. And I want to take a second, and I want to go through this for those of you, there are some other abortion bills that have been filed in the House or in the Senate. There are bills that discuss when a woman has a right to choose and when she doesn’t. And what this does, it puts, puts that to bed officially. And what I’m asking this Body to do, is to stand by the political stances that are taken, stand by the religious stances that are taken, and officially, officially protect unborn children, or fetuses, whichever you want to refer to it as, at the moment of conception. The moment of fertilization is something that everyone understands and everyone can agree with is that, we find ourselves in a position where scientifically speaking …
Speaker Lucas: Judge [ Rep. ] Clary, for what purpose do you rise ?
Rep. Clary: Point of Order.
Speaker: State your point.
Rep. Clary: Mr Speaker, under Rule 9.3, I do not believe that this amendment is germane. The original bill is talking about a medical procedure, and I don’t know that this is consistent with that bill.
Speaker Lucas: Mr. Bamberg, I’ll let you respond.
Rep. Bamberg: Mr. Speaker, if I may. This, this Amendment is very germane. I think it is short-sighted, with all due respect to Judge Clary, a good friend of mine. The bill is not just talking about a procedure. We are talking about at what point does life begin. And what the bill seeks to do, is establish that point at the point that a fetal heartbeat can be detected. What the amendment speaks to, is the same thing, it just changes the point in time in which we’re going to consider a fetus alive for purposes of the State having a sufficient interest to say that a woman cannot have an abortion. That’s all we’re doing. So my response is that this is absolutely germane based on the language of the bill itself.
Speaker Lucas: Mr. Bamberg, would you mind if I ask you a few questions ?
Rep. Bamberg: Of course, Mr. Speaker.
Speaker Lucas: Thank you, thank you, Mr. Bamberg. Representative Bamberg, I’ve, I’ve read the bill, and I’m unfortunately find myself having to rule on the Personhood Amendment. And for all disclosure, I am, I am for “personhood”, but the point that Judge Clary raises is germaneness. I’m reading the bill, and it appears that your Amendment, it appears as three pages of Whereas clauses, and the Whereas clauses, you would agree to me, would not be law, they’re just Whereas clauses, they wouldn’t, if we adopted this, they wouldn’t be included in the, in the Code. We generally don’t do that, is that correct ?
Rep. Bamberg: Mr. Speaker, I, that is, yes as I understand it, but I would note that, I believe the underlying bill itself, contains some form of Whereas …
Speaker Lucas: Yeah, maybe a little different.
Rep. Bamberg: Yes sir.
Speaker Lucas: But the meat of this Amendment would be found on page four, Section 1-1-330 and Section 1-1-340. That would be the meat of your Amendment, if you take out the Preamble, and the Whereases, and those types of things that lawyers generally deal with. Is that correct ?
Rep. Bamberg: Yes Mr. Speaker, primarily Section 1-1-330 and Section 1-1-340 is the specific law.
Speaker Lucas: And in those Sections, 1-1-330(B) or 1-1-340, you don’t deal with the issue of “abortion” in those two Sections. What that appears to be doing, and correct me if I’m wrong, is, is, it makes a legal finding about when certain constitutional rights attach. Is that correct ?
Rep. Bamberg: Mr. Speaker, it does not mention the word “abortion”, but, as it is written, it speaks to the right to life, which is the underlying premise for the fetal Heartbeat Bill, as I understand it, which is the State of South Carolina saying, at the point of a fetal heartbeat, that unborn fetus or child has a right to live, and this Amendment speaks to that.
Speaker Lucas: It does speak to that, but, but it’s also broader than that. Would you agree with that statement ? Because it talks about when certain constitutional rights attach, and those constitutional rights, one of the constitutional rights, which you correctly mentioned was the right to life, the other constitutional rights, one that’s specified, is equal protection of the laws. Is that correct ?
Rep. Bamberg: Yes, Mr. Speaker.
Speaker Lucas: So it is, it is, it is certainly broader than the bill we’re dealing with today, because whether you’re for or against the bill we’re dealing with today, it is a very long, complex bill dealing with a medical procedure. Would you say my characterization of that is correct ?
Rep. Bamberg: I would, Mr. Speaker, I would definitely agree that the Amendment is broader-based, and I think affords more protections to the unborn fetuses. It does not specifically speak to the “abortion” procedure, because I think the language as it’s written, would effectively abolish all “abortions”. But yeah, it’s way broader, I would definitely agree with that, yes sir.
Speaker Lucas: And then it’s actually in a, a, and I know this is not dispositive upon my ruling, it’s actually in Section 1 of the Code. Your Amendment would affect Section 1 of the Code, where if this bill essentially deals with Section 44 of the Code, dealing with medical procedures. Is that correct ?
Rep. Bamberg: Yes, Mr. Speaker, that’s correct.
Speaker Lucas: And in my deliberations of looking at Rule 9.3, provides that no amendment on a subject different than the one under consideration be permitted. That’s what the Rule says. That’s given rise to the “substantial effect” test which Speakers before me have utilized to judge whether amendments to bills under consideration are germane or not. So, Mr. Bamberg, I’ll listen to, to additional arguments if you have them.
I’m going to take a second after listening to your answers, to look at the bill and look at the Amendment. And you can even consult with counsel if you desire. You may want to get a better lawyer, but. ..
No, Mr. Stavrinakis is an outstanding lawyer, and I’d certainly respect him on that, but …
Mr. Bamberg, anything further that you wanted to tell me about this while, while I look at it, before I look at it?
Rep. Bamberg: Mr. Speaker, I’d like to thank you for giving me the time to kind of go through this. I’m glad that I don’t have to be cross-examined by you on the witness stand. But I would just argue again this is, in my opinion, germane. It is, it is broader than the underlying bill. While the fetal heartbeat bill does speak to “abortions”, it also talks inherently about when life exists, when it begins, and when the State wants to protect that unborn interest. And this Amendment speaks to the same thing, and would accomplish, accomplish that, but in a much simpler manner than the underlying bill.
Speaker Lucas: It, it, it, it, it, I know you understand, I know you do a lot of legal work, certainly personal injury work. We’ve spoken to this issue, on the issue of civil claims, have we not ?
Rep. Bamberg: Yes, Mr. Speaker.
Speaker Lucas: And, and actually talked about when civil claims certainly attached based upon, on, on unborn child at what point that’s done, so this is, this is not new territory for us. Let me, if you would Mr. Bamberg, let me take a look. Those are questions I had. I’m going to, if the House will stand in recess just a moment. I’ll take a look at the Amendment and the bill. I obviously understand this is very important and we want to try to be correct on this. So thank you Mr. Bamberg, and thank you for answering my questions honestly, …
Rep. Bamberg: Thank you, Mr. Speaker.
Speaker Lucas: … as I knew you would.
SC House of Representatives
IS STANDING AT EASE
[ Video time 45:38 to 46:22 – less than one minute transpires. It appears the Speaker’s statement below was substantively prepared in advance. ]
Speaker Lucas: Allright, House’ll, House’ll be in order. I’ve had the opportunity to examine House Bill 3020 and its provisions, and I’ve also examined Amendment No. 2 as offered by Representative Bamberg. My job as the presiding officer is to determine whether the Amendment relates to the “same subject” or meets the “substantial effect” test as laid out in 9.3 and past House precedent.
The Bill before us, House Bill 3020, is a comprehensive health regulation scheme that governs the delivery of health care to a specific class of patients. The Bill requires identified health care providers to take very specific steps before they are permitted to perform certain procedures. The Bill also specifically prohibit the performance of “abortion” procedures in defined circumstances. The Bill defines the terms as it uses them and applies them within its complex framework.
So the Bill itself is a very specific bill. The Amendment, however is, is a very general bill. It does contain a set of legislative findings which would not become law, but the crux of the Amendment would be to declare fertilization as the point that rights would vest, all rights, right to life, due process, equal protection of the law, that those rights would vest upon conception.
And, and, Mr. Bamberg, I agree that it should be the law, but that’s not the issue before us, the issue before us is germaneness. As I have reviewed the applicable precedent on the application of this Rule, it has been clear that one of the primary considerations by several Speakers before me, as we’ve looked through the precedents book, has been the scope of the underlying legislation. By your testimony, not by your testimony, but by your very candid answers, you admitted to me, that this Bill is much, much broader than what we’re attempting to deal with today. At least a dozen times, the Clerk informs me, three separate Speakers have ruled that any amendment that expands the original scope of legislation beyond the subject of the bill is non-germane. While the issue of healthcare and “abortion” have not been specifically ruled on, distinctions have been made concerning subjects less inclusive [ Note: House Journal for April 24, 2019 says “exclusive” in transcription/paraphrase of Speaker’s remarks ] of one another than the grant of due process to an entire new class of citizens in South Carolina and a comprehensive healthcare regulation.
Therefore, I find Amendment No. 2 exceeds the scope of House Bill 3020 and I sustain Judge [ Rep. ] Clary’s Point of Order, and I find the Amendment out of order. Clerk will read.
Rep. Hill: Mr. Speaker. Mr. Speaker.
Speaker Lucas: Yes, Mr Hill.
Rep. Hill: Thank you, Mr. Speaker. Pursuant to House Rule 1.5, I appeal that ruling.
Speaker Lucas: Thank you, Mr Hill
[ House Journal for April 24, 2019:
“… the SPEAKER called the SPEAKER PRO TEMPORE to the Chair to act as Presiding Officer.” ]
Speaker Lucas vacates the Chair.
Speaker Pro Tem Pope in the Chair.
Speaker Pro Tem Pope: Ladies and Gentlemen, the Speaker’s ruling concerning germanenesss has been appealed under Rule 1.5. Any member that wishes to be heard on this matter is, is welcome to come up and speak for no longer than 20 minutes. Mr. Hill requests that he be heard on this matter.
Rep. Hill: Thank you Mr. Speaker. Thank you members. My point in doing this here is simply, I want to call to your attention, I’m not going to call names here, but I recently heard one of my colleagues quip that germaneness is in the eye of the beholder. That certainly does seem to be the case with how some rulings come down, sometimes they make sense, sometimes maybe they don’t. In this case, this is, we’re dealing, we have before us the opportunity to vote on an Amendment, that while worded significantly differently, and inserted into a different point in statute, has the same substantial effect, I believe, of essentially banning all “abortions” in South Carolina. This Amendment, a personhood approach, I believe does a more
thorough job of that. And at the very least, I think it should be up to this Body whether, which direction we take on this policy. And so, I want a chance to vote on it here on the House floor. That’s, that’s why I made, that’s why I appealed the ruling. Thank you.
Speaker Pro Tem Pope: Mr. McCravy is recognized.
Rep. McCravy: Thank you Mr. Speaker. Just briefly, the ruling is correct in my opinion. You have Title 44 that’s been amended and added to by the bill. This bill has Section 1-1-330, a completely different part of the Code, because it talks about the rights of an individual, so it’s completely different. I agree, ultimately, with probably the ultimate conclusion of the Personhood Bill, and I’ve signed on to the Personhood Bill, but this, this would be improper to attach it to this bill, and make this bill a completely different bill. So, I agree with the ruling on it.
Speaker Pro Tem Pope: Mr. King, Mr King, are you requesting to speak, sir?
Rep King: Yes sir.
Speaker Pro Tem Pope: OK, Mr. King is recognized to speak. Mr. King.
Rep King: Thank you, Mr. Speaker. And, I would like to say, I would appreciate the opportunity to stand here and speak about this particular Amendment. It is my understanding that we are here today to debate “abortions” in South Carolina. The banning, or the beginning to identify, life. And I’ve heard many colleagues today say that we want to protect life. And we want to insure that once a lady or a woman is impregnated, that they go full term and have their child. This gives us that opportunity. To vote, to say that there is no “abortions’ to be done in South Carolina. So I want to be clear. You voting against this Amendment, mean that you want to allow “abortions” to happen in South Carolina. You voting for this Amendment means that you want to ban “abortions” in South Carolina. So I want to say, please understand how you’re voting. And if this is what you …
Speaker Pro Tem Pope: Mr. King, I apologize, sir. Mr. King, this is about the appeal as to the Speaker’s ruling. This is not about the Amendment.
Rep. King: Thank you.
Speaker Pro Tem Pope: Allright, thank you. Any further wish to speak on the appeal of the Speaker’s ruling ? Ladies and Gentlemen, Rule .5 allows for an appeal on the Speaker’s ruling. My role as I see it before you is just two-fold. One, I am to determine whether the Speaker in his judgment, ruling under Rule 9.3 abused his discretion. Second, and again the rules are not clear, so I’m going to hit this both ways; one, whether Speaker Lucas abused his discretion, number two, whether the underlying germaneness ruling was appropriate. I find first, Mr. Hill, that he did not abuse his discretion. I look also at the fact that he considered applicable precedent in the application of this rule, and that his ruling has a founding basis both in precedent, and in the law as presented before us. Therefore, I find that he did not abuse his discretion. Also that the, the ruling as to germaneness was appropriate, and that is my ruling.
Speaker Pro Tem Pope: Mr Hill is recognized.
Rep. Hill: Thank you, thank you, Mr. Speaker. It, this is a point of parliamentary inquiry, I guess you would say. It is my understanding that, under parliamentary procedure that appealing, or appealing the ruling of the Chair would result in a vote. Can you clarify if that is indeed the process ?
Speaker Pro Tem Pope: Under the Rules as I’ve seen them Mr. Hill, I have seen no indication it requires a vote. I think it requires me to make a decision. I’ve made that decision sir. Thank you.
Speaker Pro Tem Pope vacates the Chair.
Speaker Lucas in the Chair.
Speaker Lucas: We’re on Amendment No. 3. Clerk’ll read.
[ END at Video time 57:28 ]