Sarah Huckabee Sanders Signs Bill to Establish 'Monument to the Unborn' at State Capitol
Arkansas Gov. Sarah Huckabee Sanders (R) has signed a bill to create a “monument to the unborn” in Little Rock.
“As a memorial to the lives lost from 1973 to 2022 due to the decisions of the United States Supreme Court, and as a constant reminder of our duty to protect the life of every innocent human person, no matter how young or old, or how helpless and vulnerable that person may be, it is the intent of the General Assembly of the State of Arkansas to enact the Monument to Unborn Children Display Act, § 22-3-223, and the Monument to Unborn Children Display Fund,” the bill states.
The bill explains the secretary of state will “permit and arrange placement on the State Capitol grounds of a suitable monument commemorating unborn children aborted during the era of Roe v. Wade, 410 U.S. 113 (1973).”
Additionally, the Capitol Arts and Grounds Commission will oversee “the selection of the artist and design of the monument with input from pro-life groups in Arkansas.”
The bill continues, “Upon approval of the artist and design, the Secretary of State shall arrange for the construction, placement, and dedication of the monument on the State Capitol grounds by private entities at no expense to the State of Arkansas.”
The secretary of state may also “accept gifts, grants, and donations from individuals and organizations, to be deposited as trust funds into the Monument to Unborn Children Display Fund.”
Holly Dickson, executive director of the ACLU of Arkansas, issued a statement to ABC News expressing her opposition to the monument.
“Arkansas is ranked as one of the worst states in the nation for overall child well-being, maternal health, and the life expectancy among adults, yet the legislature has enacted dangerous limits and bans on reproductive healthcare,” Dickson said.
She added, “Lawmakers should be working to protect Arkansans with real solutions instead of this type of performative political stunt.”
Arkansas state Rep. Steve Unger, a Republican, even voted “no” on the bill.
“From a Christian perspective, this has the look and feel of spiking the football,” Unger said, adding, “It looks like gloating.”
Unger continued, “Public memorials to our nation’s wars where we face an external threat are right and proper. A memorial to an ongoing culture war where we seem to be shooting at each other is not.”
Another House Republican, Rep. Jeremiah Moore, voted against the monument and argued it could “have an unintended effect on the pro-life cause.”
Moore shared he believes “that life is precious, but we must approach this issue with grace. It will serve as a poke in the eye to all those who don’t share our beliefs.”
After the Supreme Court overturned Roe v. Wade last year, an Arkansas law approved in 2019 banning close to all abortions took effect.
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