Senatorial candidate Cory Gardner's spokespeople are saying that a federal personhood bill cosponsored by Garder and called the Life at Conception Act, is not really a proposed personhood law because it "simply states that life begins at conception" and would not actually outlaw abortion or contraception, as a real personhood law would do.
If so, you'd expect other co-sponsors of the Life at Conception Act to agree with Gardner, who's challenging Democratic Sen. Mark Udall.
After co-sponsoring the same Life at Conception Act in March, 2013, four months before Gardner signed on, Rep. Charles Boustany, (R-LA) issued a statement saying:
"As a Member of Congress, I take the cause of fighting for the unborn just as seriously. That's why I cosponsored H.R. 1091, the Life at Conception Act. This bill strikes at the heart of the Roe v. Wade decision by declaring life at conception, granting constitutional protection to the unborn under the 14th Amendment."
Boustany's comment comports with the actual factual language of the bill. It's an attempt to outlaw all abortion, even for rape and incest, via the 14th Amendment.
I've made multiple attempts to reach the House sponsor of Life at Conception Act, Rep. Jim Jordan (R-OH), for his take on his own bill, but I have yet to hear back. [Hint to a reporter who might be reading this: Would you please give him a call?]
But Sen. Rand Paul is the Senate sponsor of the Life at Conception Act, which is identical to the bill co-sponsored by Gardner. And this is how Paul described his own bill in March of last year.
"The Life at Conception Act legislatively declares what most Americans believe and what science has long known-that human life begins at the moment of conception, and therefore is entitled to legal protection from that point forward." [BigMedia emphasis]
In January of this year, Paul released a statement saying:
"Since the Roe v. Wade decision in 1973, 55 million abortions have taken place in America. The question remains, can a civilization long endure if it does not respect Life? It is the government's duty to protect life, liberty, and property, but primarily and most importantly, a government must protect Life," Sen. Paul said. "In order to protect the unborn from the very moment Life begins, I introduced the Life at Conception Act. Today, our nation wavers and our moral compass is adrift. Only when America chooses, remembers and restores her respect for life will we re-discover our moral bearings and truly find our way."
You can argue that Jordan's personhood bill--and its Senate counterpart--would lead to a major court fight with an uncertain outcome. And anti-choice crusaders have different views about the most effective way to enact abortion bans. But the clear intent of the Life at Conception Act is to establish personhood as federal law, as co-sponsors and sponsors of the bill have stated.