Parental Rights

It comes as republican lawmakers push for the amendment, one some view as an attempt to restrict a minor's access to abortion.

House Speaker Johnnie Byrd may have lost support in his bid to put parental rights in the state Constitution when he referred to House members as "sheep in need of someone to tell them what to do."

Rep. Curtis Richardson has concerns about the parents' rights bill anyway, but he thinks the "sheep" reference could even cost the speaker.

"Given what the speaker was quoted as saying, there may be some people who would have supported him on that issue that might be re-thinking that decision,” says Rep. Curtis Richardson, (D) Tallahassee.

Planned Parenthood's Stephanie Grutman is campaigning hard against the parents’ rights amendment, and though she didn't want to discuss the sheep reference, she's clearly pleased it's got people talking.

"Just because the speaker has a proposal doesn't mean the people of Florida have to go along with it and the people of Florida are speaking very clearly now, through editorial boards, through letters to the editor, that this is a bad bill," says Stephanie.

Supporters of the Parental Rights Amendment are hoping to keep the discussion on the bill. They insist all it does is clarify that children don't have special rights to privacy over their parents.

George Washington University law professor Jonathan Turley helped write the bill. He insists it's not about abortion.

"Basically this amendment would say there aren't any extra privacy provisions for children to use against their parents," says Turley.

But the already fiery debate on the bill will only get hotter when the Legislature convenes next week.

Byrd may have also stalled efforts to reach a compromise on the bill when he called pro-choice Senate President Jim King "pro-abortion" earlier this week.


WCTV 1801 Halstead Blvd. Tallahassee, FL 32309
Gray Television, Inc. - Copyright © 2002-2014 - Designed by Gray Digital Media - Powered by Clickability 620531 - wctv.tv/a?a=620531