By DANIELLE WOODWARD
Capital News Service
LANSING — State lawmakers are drafting legislation to ban physicians from performing abortions on any fetus with a detectable heartbeat. Women wanting an abortion would first have to have an external ultrasound, said Rep Tom Hooker, R-Byron Center, who is developing the legislation. “Generally speaking the heartbeat and brain waves are the best indicator of if the fetus is alive,” Hooker said. “The heartbeat can be measured as early as four weeks into the pregnancy but an external ultrasound would pick it up no earlier than eight weeks along.”
A separate bill would provide for fines of up to $50,000 to up to five years in prison for physicians who violate the ban, Hooker said. Right to Life of Michigan, a nonprofit organization that lobbies against abortion, has been working with Hooker to develop the legislation.