FRANKFORT (LifeSiteNews) – The Kentucky legislature has enacted more conservative laws over vetoes by Democrat Gov. Andy Beshear, including packages of pro-life and election integrity reforms.
The Blaze reports that the measures include the pro-life omnibus law HB 3, which prohibits abortions performed past 15 weeks and the dispensation of abortion pills by mail, as well as requires parental consent for minors’ abortions and humane burial or cremation of aborted babies.
Beshear vetoed the law, primarily citing a lack of an explicit rape exception for the parental consent provision. While the word “rape” does not appear in the bill, Kentucky Right to Life responded by noting that it actually does address the governor’s professed concern.
“Unfortunately, those opposed to any restrictions on abortions often insert rape and incest to undermine the legislation,” the group said. “The fact that statements on HB 3 are made about such tragic and life-impacting matters as rape or incest without fully reading the bill … which explicitly indicates exceptions for sexual abuse and sexual abuse by the minor girl’s parent — is a political travesty.”
Other measures initially blocked by Beshear only to be revived by the legislature include funding for charter schools, new rules for state welfare programs such as Medicaid and food stamps, a reduction in state income taxes, and an election security package containing several reforms, including a transition to fully paper ballots over the next two years and video surveillance of voting machines and ballot boxes.
LifeSiteNews reported last week that the legislature also succeeded in voting to override Beshear’s veto of a new law to ban biological males from competing in women’s sports. Kentucky law allows the state legislature to override a governor’s veto with a simple majority vote.
For years, Kentucky political battles have been largely shaped by divided government, whether divided between the governor and the legislature, or between the governor and the attorney general’s office. Last month, the state’s Republican Attorney General Daniel Cameron won a legal battle recognizing his authority to defend pro-life laws abandoned by Beshear.