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Tuesday, December 20, 2016

 12:11 PM 

Vos predicts Assembly will pass fetal tissue bill, but won't offer details

Speaker Robin Vos today predicted the Assembly this spring will pass a ban on the sale of fetal tissue from abortions, but declined to offer details of how the bill might look after it got bogged down this session over concerns of the potential impact on research at the University of Wisconsin.

Vos, R-Rochester, told WisPolitics.com in an interview he wants a bill that “actually saves unborn children as opposed to just posing for political points.” He also wants the legislation to ensure UW can continue its research. But he said details of the bill will be left up to those who have pushed the proposal.

“That’s a very difficult situation to navigate, and that’s why I want to bring people of goodwill together to have the same conversation about how do we do this in a way that actually saves unborn children and not just pass a ban that doesn’t do anything,” Vos said in the interview.

Rep. Andre Jacque, R-De Pere, Rep. Joel Kleefisch, R-Oconomowoc, and others introduced legislation this session that would ban the transfer of or experimentation on fetal tissue from abortions. The bill defined a “fetal body party as a cell, tissue, organ or other part of an unborn child who is aborted by an induced abortion after January 1, 2015.” UW officials warned it would impact work now being done at the university and scare off researchers, who they feared would leave for other states without similar restrictions.  

Vos declined to say what changes could be made to get the bill through his house, saying he didn’t want to step on the message of those championing the bill.

“That’s up to the people who really are pushing it to show how it will save unborn children, right?” Vos said. “Because that’s the whole goal. It’s not to say we passed a bill and then nothing happens. Plus, I don’t want a court to strike it down because it’s not based on an actual rationale.”

See more from the interview in today's PM Update.


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