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Rape, incest and court fees at center of fiery debate over anti-abortion bill at Oklahoma Capitol

OKLAHOMA CITY - A controversial anti-abortion bill passed the House Tuesday, but not before a heated debate over the Bible, rape, and incest.

HB1549 punishes doctors who perform abortions if the mother is seeking one because of a genetic disorder.

“Abortion offends God, plain and simple,” Rep. John Bennett said on the House floor.

The debate went on for more than an hour Tuesday.

“I heard statements of ‘why are we wasting our time on a pro-life bill up here? We need to worry about the budget.’ Let me ask you this, what is more important to you? Money or life?” Bennett said.

Rep. George Faught’s bill would ban doctors from preforming abortions if the mother is seeking one because of a genetic abnormality or down syndrome.

Doctors could face steep fines up to $100,000.

“Representative, is rape the will of God?” Rep. Cory Williams asked Faught.

“Well, you know, if you read the Bible, there are a couple circumstances where that happened, and the Lord uses all circumstances,” Faught replied.

“Is incest the will of God?” Williams asked.

“Same answer,” Faught said.

Opponents argued the bill is unconstitutional.

Faught said this about the attorney general potentially defending the bill in court: “They’re on salary so there`s no additional cost to the state to the AG`s office to defend anything we do at the legislature that might be challenged.”

“We haven’t moved the needle on abortion with these bills because they last for a day before the injunction goes in place, and then 12 months later, we get a ruling and then we pay the opposing party’s attorneys’ fees so it absolutely costs the state money,” Williams said.

Rep. Faught refused to go on camera about his bill and sent our crew to his office to get a statement.

“Life, no matter how it is conceived, is valuable and something to be protected. Let me be clear, God never approves of rape or incest. However, even in the worst circumstances, God can bring beauty from ashes,” Faught said in a written statement.

The bill passed with 67 votes.

More than a dozen members did not vote on the bill.

It now goes to the Senate.