The top Democrat in the Alabama State Senate compared a recently passed pro-life measure to rape on Wednesday.
Bobby Singleton, who has served as the minority leader of the Alabama Senate since January, told CNN's New Day he was appalled by the state legislature's passage of a bill, which if implemented would ban abortion except in cases where the mother's life was in jeopardy.
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"I think this is a horrible bill, still," Singleton said. "I think that we raped women last night. We made [the] women of Alabama the model of the new Roe v. Wade. I think that this is just a horrible bill and hopefully if it gets to that level—to the Supreme Court—[then] the Supreme Court will not select this as a test case."
"I would like to think that this is just for the purposes of the Roe v. Wade," singleton continued. "You know, there are some members of that side of the aisle who really, sincerely believe in this."
Singleton's controversial remarks came one day after the state senate passed H.B. 314, which establishes personhood for unborn children, by a wide margin. The legislation criminalizes the practice of abortion, prohibiting it nearly all instances except for when mother's life is in serious jeopardy. Abortion providers caught in violation of the legislation would be eligible to receive up to 99 years or life in prison. If implemented, the bill would be the strictest pro-life statute in the nation.
Alabama's republican governor, Kay Ivey, has not signaled if she will sign the measure into law. The landslide margin by which the bill passed both chambers of the Alabama legislature—74-3 in the House and 25-6 in the Senate—means it would likely overcome any veto attempt by Ivey.
The bill's legality, however, would not be ensured since it is likely to face stringent challenges at the judicial level. Pro-abortion groups, such as Planned Parenthood and NARAL Pro-Choice America, have already promised to fight the law all the way to the Supreme Court.
Backers of the bill appear to welcome such a challenge, arguing the bill could serve as a vehicle to revisit the Supreme Court's ruling in Roe.
"At one time the Supreme Court wrongly endorsed racial segregation with the Plessy v. Ferguson ruling, but it was wise enough to later admit its error and overturn that precedent with Brown v. Board of Education," one of the bill's sponsor said upon introduction. "It is time for this court to do the same with Roe v. Wade."