Horne Defends Ban On Abortions Based On Gender Or Race

July 24, 2013

Arizona Attorney General Tom Horne is asking a federal judge to throw out a challenge to the state's ban on abortion because of the child's race or gender. The 2011 law makes it a felony for a doctor to terminate a pregnancy for those reasons. The NAACP and the National Asian Pacific American Women's Forum sued two months ago, saying the law is discriminatory and aimed at reducing the number of black and Asian women who have abortions, based on racist and discriminatory stereotypes. But, Horne says the law is not illegal because it applies to all women regardless of race.

“That doesn't discriminate against anybody,” Horne said. “That's designed to protect minorities and disfavored genders. For example, women. It's designed to protect women who might end up getting aborted because people want a son rather than a daughter.”

Horne says the two groups are not saying members want such abortions, which he claims leaves them without legal standing to challenge the measure. And, he says women cannot be prosecuted under the law, which has criminal penalties, that only apply to doctors.

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