True to his promise, Georgia Gov. Brian Kemp on Tuesday signed his state’s recently-passed “heartbeat bill” into law, a measure that bans abortions once a fetal heartbeat can be detected, usually around six weeks into a pregnancy.
Kemp, who’d promised to sign the bill into law even in the face of massive pushback from abortion advocates and a hoard of activist celebrities, said he signed the measure “to ensure that all Georgians have the opportunity to live, grow, learn and prosper in our great state.”
"Georgia is a state that values life," Kemp said at the signing. "We stand up for those who are unable to speak for themselves."
The Republican governor added he knows the law will be challenged in court, but that won't stop Georgia for standing up for the lives of the unborn.
"Our job is to do what is right, not what is easy," he said. "We will not back down. We will always continue to fight for life."
Pro-"choice" celebrities including Alyssa Milano have threatened to boycott the state if Kemp signed the bill, while abortion groups have already said they plan to sue the state over the law, which is seen by many as a strategic step toward pushing pro-life legislation to the Supreme Court in order to challenge Roe v. Wade.
The law does include exceptions for rape and incest (with a verified police report) as well as serious fetal anomalies and when the life of the mother is in danger.
Only five other states – Mississippi, Kentucky, Iowa, North Dakota and Ohio – already have similar “heartbeat laws” on the books. But more than a half a dozen other Republican-led states, including Tennessee, Missouri, South Carolina, Florida, Texas, Louisiana and West Virginia, are currently considering similar laws, while some Democrat-led states like New York, Massachusetts and Illinois are expanding their own abortion laws to include elective abortions up until the moment of birth.