Camerota to Indiana AG: 'Why Would You Want a Family to Have to Have a Child with a Severe Disability'

CNN's New Day co-host Alisyn Camerota invited Indiana Attorney General Curtis Hill (R) ostensibly to talk about that state's abortion bill that was before the Supreme Court on Tuesday. In an unofficial ruling, the Court punted, allowing a lower court decision, that struck down the state's ban on abortion solely based on the race, sex, or disability of the unborn child, to stand.

Naturally, Camerota spent the entire segment trying to understand why Indiana would pass such a law and questioning Curtis about why Indiana wants to "force" parents to have children with "abnormalities."

 

 

Admitting that she was "curious," Camerota began by asking Curtis: "Why would you want a family to have to have a child with a severe disability?" It should not have needed to be said, but nobody wants a child with "a severe disability," people obviously want all babies to be as healthy as possible, but Camerota's phrasing makes it seem like people with "a severe disability" are a burden and undesirable and therefore their "termination" is no big deal.

Curtis, not accepting the premise, responded: "[T]he issue that the general assembly faced was not with regard to the question you posed. It's the question of the rights and consideration of the unborn child in terms of discriminatory actions of eliminating that opportunity of life."

Camerota then, admittedly confused, questioned Hill further: "As you know there are lots of terminations of pregnancies based on the fact that there are severe abnormalities of a fetus and so why would you take away the choice from a family?" Hill again refused to debate matters on her terms: "It's a matter of making the decision solely on the basis of not wanting a child because the child doesn't have a particular characteristic."

The rest of the interview played out along similar lines with Camerota expressing how awful it was that Indiana did not allow the undesirables to be aborted, at one point having to correct herself for using the word "children" instead of "fetus." 

Camerota's sentiments are similar to CBS's creepily eugenic sounding story from 2017: "Iceland is on pace to virtually eliminate Down Syndrome through abortion." Speaking of eugenics, the people who claim to be in favor of anti-discrimination legislation, have found the one group of people that do not deserve such protection: the unborn racial, gendered, or "severly" disabled undesirables. 

(h/t: Washington Free Beacon)

Here is a transcript for the May 29 interview:

CNN's New Day
May 29, 2019
7:22 a.m. Eastern

ALISYN CAMEROTA: The U.S. Supreme court side stepping a big part of an abortion case. In so doing the High Court does not appear ready to test the landmark case of Roe v. Wade . This was a new decision on a 2016 Indiana abortion law. The justices let stand a lower court's rule that blocks Indiana’s ban on abortion motivated by race, sex, or disability. But the justices also allowed part of the law that requires clinics to bury or cremate fetal remains. Joining us now to talk about it is Curtis Hill, the Attorney General of Indiana. Good morning Mr. Hill, thanks for being here.

CURTIS HILL: Good morning. Thank you for having me. 

CAMEROTA: So, it sounds like you got this mixed decision. What I want to focus in on is the first part that we just described. Indiana had tried to block women from getting abortions if it were based on a disability and I'm just curious about that one. Why would you want a family to have to have a child with a severe disability? 

HILL: Well, the issue that the general assembly faced was not with regard to the question you posed. It's the question of the rights and consideration of the unborn child in terms of discriminatory actions of eliminating that opportunity of life. Making a decision based solely on race or disability certainly is a discriminatory practice. No decision in terms of whether or not to have a child should be based on that solely and that’s what the General Assembly chose to do in its ban.

CAMEROTA: That confuses me, because as you know there are lots of terminations of pregnancies based on the fact that there are severe abnormalities of a fetus and so why would you take away the choice from a family? 

HILL: Well, it's not a matter of taking away the choice. It's a matter of making the decision solely on the basis of not wanting a child because the child doesn't have a particular characteristic. We have certainly examples every day of children who appear to have disabilities or concerns or problems, prenatal, that are born and live productive lives and families who support those children. 

CAMEROTA: Yeah. 

HILL: It's a matter of whether or not it's appropriate to use that as a sole basis. The court's decision, I think, was very interesting, because some may view it as a denial of Indiana's ban. I  think it was something a little different. It was really a wait and see. The court used an appropriate standard of “We haven't seen this particular issue. Let's let it percolate.” I think that was Justice Thomas’ words

CAMEROTA: I think you're right. They punted it, but again I don't feel I'm getting an answer to my question. Why would families in Indiana, why would lawmakers make them have to have a child with severe disabilities? How does that work? Why is that a good thing for the state of Indiana? 

HILL: The Indiana General Assembly has looked at from it the standpoint of whether or not it's appropriate to seek an abortion solely on the basis of a characteristic that someone else chooses to not be appropriate. That's the measure they have taken. 

CAMEROTA: But we are talking about severe abnormalities where, as you know, let's be specific, okay? A chromosomal defect: trisomy 13 or 18, that child will have so many problems and will most likely not live past their first birthday. Why would lawmakers force parents to bring that child to fruition? 

HILL: The law doesn't address issues with respect to severe abnormalities that would make a child unviable. That's not the point of this particular statute. 

CAMEROTA: But, it does cover those. 

HILL: -- Decisions based on -- this statute bases decisions on discriminatory practices. Simply making a decision to have an abortion based upon a characteristic that is unnecessary. I think the issue here is based ---

CAMEROTA: Yes, but lots of families to do make that decision that… hold on a second. Lots of families make that decision based upon finding out their children, that their fetus has a severe abnormality. That is the reality. 

HILL: --- the reality is the court will look this matter over in the future. I think the door is now open and if states are paying attention there is an avenue in which to move forward and determine through the various circuits what the appropriate standard would be. When there is a conflict in the standard we'll see the Supreme Court in all likelihood take action. 

CAMEROTA: I hear what you are saying. The Supreme Court punted. What I don't still understand is why the Indiana legislature thought they could force parents to have to care for a child with a severe life-threatening abnormality. what's the answer to that? 

HILL: And I have told you that the Indiana General Assembly has not taken a position of forcing anyone to do anything. 

CAMEROTA: That is what the law would do. 

HILL: The interest in Indiana has been to provide protection to the unborn from decisions that are made that are uncharacteristic. Making a determine that this is a child who is unwanted because of a discriminatory practice. The General Assembly in Indiana believes appropriately that it's an inappropriate manner in which to make a choice of aborting a child.

CAMEROTA: So, just help me understand this, if a woman goes in to a clinic in Indiana, if this Supreme Court decision hadn't happened and had a child with severe disabilities she would not be able to terminate that pregnancy? 

HILL: Each case is an individual case. The severe disabilities in terms of a particular characteristic has to be determined by each child. As I said before, this is not a matter in which a child is unviable or where a situation where the health of the mother is in question. 

CAMEROTA: I mean, Mr. Hill, it just is. The way the law was written, that does cover severe disabilities and women in Indiana would not have been able to terminate those pregnancies and the Supreme Court blocked that. They punted it, I should say, they punted it because they agreed with a lower court that it doesn't make any sense. So that's where we are today and I just wanted to get your concept on the motivations for why Indiana felt that way. But we shall see what the Supreme Court does in the future. Mr. Curtis Hill, thank you very much for joining us. 

HILL Thank you. 

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