The Washington State surrogacy bill, HB 1267, did not accomplish its most important task. While they were successful in eliminating the terms "father" and "mother" in parental law, Rep. Jamie Pedersen's bid for legal womb for rent agreements has been stripped from the bill.
It has passed the Senate with a 27-21 vote. However, with significant modifications.
Leading up to the vote, a number of law makers expressed concern over Pedersen's paid surrogacy plan.
Rep. Pedersen, a homosexual activist and long time legal council for LAMBDA in Washington State, has been working to legalize paid surrogacy for several years.
While the Olympian headline spun the story, "Wash. Senate Vote Keeps Paid Surrogacy Bill Alive," it is not very "alive" in this session. Undoubtedly it will come back in 2012.
The Olympian said, "Rep. Jamie Pedersen, the bills main sponsor, said he was not disappointed by the Senate's action because it kept the bill alive, albeit in an altered form."
Pedersen said the bill, "could now be discussed until the (April 24) end of the session."
Pedersen's Democratic colleague, Senator James Hargrove D-Hoquiam, said, "When you put money into the mix, that becomes problematic and there is the potential for abuse because of the financial motive."
Others were more harsh in their opposition to paid surrogacy saying it "would commercialize pregnancy," with some comparing it to the illegal trafficking of organs, and even prostitution.
Rep. Mark Miloscia, D-Federal Way, introduced 20 amendments in what appeared to be an attempt to reconstruct or simply kill the bill.
This is one such amendment:
"In the interests of full disclosure, the legislature declares in its good judgment that couples who are unable to have children be allowed to enter into womb rental agreements with low income women, lonely military wives, or women with mental illness or disabilities. The legislature endeavors by this act to allow wealthy couples to artificially create children using surrogate woman and sell the babies to wealthy couples for the greater good of Washington state. This act, titled the Baby Selling Act of 2011, will create jobs for women of lesser means and poorer circumstances."
I personally believe it was, at least in part, the strong public contact and attendance at the public hearing that helped many of the law makers to stand firm against what Miloscia calls "womb rental agreements."
As this session nears its end, would you take a moment and contact your state representative and senator once again affirming that you strongly oppose paid surrogacy?
This issue will come back in January 2012. The community that wants it, will demand it again.
You may contact your elected official here.
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Faith and Freedom
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