The Freedom of Reproductive Choice Act (S.B. S3030) passed by a vote of 46 to 22 in the New Jersey General Assembly on Monday, hours after passing in the state Senate by a vote of 23 to 15. The bill will be sent to the desk of New Jersey Governor Phil Murphy (D), who has signaled that he would promptly sign it into law.
Greg Quinlan of The Center for Garden State Families says legalizing abortion up to birth is just one of the troubling things the measure includes.
"It strips parents of any parental right or notification," he begins. "It's also going to strip any religious business -- if you're a Christian bookstore or you just run your business as a Christian business sort of like Hobby Lobby, you will have no rights."
Non-doctors will also be allowed by law to terminate preborn children. And though a provision requiring insurance companies to pick up the tab was removed, Quinlan says the language is so vague that a liberal judge could still require it.
"We don't know all of the ramifications of it yet," Quinlan admits. "We do know they hastily put it together; the public barely had any time to look at it or read it. They didn't even give it a name until the day before it went before a vote. I know many of the legislators didn't have time to read it."
And he says the state's Catholic governor invoked the name of Jesus when promoting the legislation, essentially declaring that as a follower of Jesus Christ, he would ensure that reproductive rights are enforced and broadened in New Jersey when he came into office.
When Gov. Murphy signs the bill into law, New Jersey will be in competition with New York and California for the designation of abortion capital of the United States.