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After a two-day marathon that saw Democrats in the House try to run out the clock by putting up 1000 amendments, the Heartbeat Bill passed the South Carolina House 82-32.  The drama began on Tuesday as the House convened with the Republican leadership facing 1000 amendments and numerous attempts by the Democrats to adjourn, recede, or start over. 

House debate ran over 12 hours on Tuesday, beginning at around 12:45pm and not ending until around 1:30am Wednesday morning.  A computer crash led to the House voting to recede and continue debate later Wednesday morning.  The House continued to plough through the amendments beginning at 10:00am on Wednesday with the final vote coming around 9:45pm Wednesday night. 

During the debate, Democrats decried the waste of taxpayer dollars because of the length of the House debate even though at any time, they could have taken down their amendments.  Once the amendments were out of the way, it took all of ten minutes to pass the bill.  Tempers ran a bit short both days as the debate dragged on.  House Speaker Murrell Smith was ill on Tuesday and unable to attend the session.  Rep. Davy Hiott (House Majority leader), Rep. Weston Newton (Judiciary Committee Chairman), and Rep. Bruce Bannister (Chairman, Ways and Means) rotated presiding over the session, ruling hundreds of amendments out of order for being dilatory or not germane.  Bills that are dilatory are determined to be put up, not to actually change the bill but to obstruct the progress of the debate.  Bills that are not germane are not related to the topic covered by the bill. 

Some of the rhetoric on the Democrat side of the isle was chilling.  One Democrat said unborn babies are nothing more than property.  Another suggested any woman who is not allowed to end her baby’s life after six weeks is not free. House Republicans stood firm turning back all amendments and staying in the chamber until the bill passed.

Now on to the Senate where the word is, the votes are there to pass the bill on to Governor McMaster for his signature.  Please pray!

You can use the link below to locate and contact your House member.  Please thank them for enduring two marathon sessions to pass this bill!

To God be the glory!!

He must increase, I must decrease

Dr. Tony Beam


SCBaptist Office of Public Policy

  • Dr. Tony Beam

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