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Kansas bill would make surrogate pregnancy illegal

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TOPEKA, Kan. -- Kansas state senators heard arguments on Monday about a bill that would make surrogate pregnancy contracts illegal in the Sunflower State, but the measure faces a difficult road.

The bill would make it illegal to pay or compensate women to be surrogate mothers, which is a woman who carries another couple's child to term. The proposal would also void any existing surrogacy contacts.

Johnson County Republican Senator Mary Pilcher-Cook introduced the Senate bill to make surrogate parenting contracts illegal and unenforceable. The bill would also criminalize anyone involved in such contracts.

Pilcher-Cook told FOX 4 she was unavailable to comment, but in an email Pilcher-Cook wrote:

"One woman or one child exploited is one too many and we need to take a comprehensive view of the subject. Many times there are good intentions, but it is imperative we are fully informed about where this technology is taking us as a society." 

But an attorney FOX 4 spoke with says the bill, as broadly as it's written now, could also have some unintended consequences. Attorney Sandy Krigel has been involved with dozens of local surrogacy contracts.

"Most of these people have waited for years, if not decades to have children," he said.

Krigel said the bill is a fix to a problem that doesn't exist in Kansas.

"I don't know of a single instance in Kansas or Missouri where anybody has ever stepped forward and claimed that they've been exploited. I think that this would really limit individuals opportunities to grow their families," he said.

Krigel said the bill not only limits opportunities for couples where surrogacy is the only option, but he says as written, it could also stop artificial insemination between a husband and wife.

"I think the biggest impact would be on very traditional, husband and wife married couples," he said.

The measure apparently doesn't have the support of the senate leadership and that usually means a measure has little chance of coming to a vote.

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  • Mellanie

    As a woman who was previously told that carrying my own child would jot he possible, this bill seems very misguided to me. Women who struggle with fertility should have every option available to have their own biological child, including surrogacy.

  • Dylan W

    Jeanne why don’t you adopt then, if it’s so easy? People think it’s so simple when it’s actually a very long, expensive process that has no guarantees. I don’t understand why adopting falls on the shoulders of those who can’t have or have difficulty having children.

  • Joe

    Adoption has become such an expensive process that for many families, it isn’t with in their financial means. Low income folks are able to love and raise children, too. Raising kids has more to do with the family’s morals and commitment to be a good person than it does about money.

  • Bob Jones

    Thank you Mary Pilcher-Cook! How refreshing to see that not every politician has forfeited their conscience and common sense. To the anything goes crowd: I hear Europe is a nice place to live…you should go find out.

  • Jeri

    I cannot understand where all of the regulations in regards to women’s health is coming from. As a parent who has experienced fertility issues and the devastating effects that miscarriage had on my husband and I, not only as a couple but to our respective families who were expecting a baby, having had one child who is happy and healthy, we are grateful for all medical procedures that would give us a shot at another healthy child. It’s a shame that adoptive regulations in this country have become so strict, and it’s a terrible shame that my son may never have a sibling, due to this trend in pushing both women’s health and fertility options backward.

    Do me a favor – experience the joy of pregnancy. Get overjoyed with your spouse about your pregnancy. Get about 5 months along with twins, and for absolutely no reason, start contractions and lose those children. Call your spouse from work and explain that you’re leaving by ambulance. Get the worst news of your life. Decide who to call, and who should call, and experience that loss over and over again with everyone you know. Go on to have 3 miscarriages,. Be the person no one can look in the eye when you share that you’re pregnant. And go through this over and over -experience a cerclage, stay on bed rest for months, lose half of your household income in anticipation of a baby, but don’t get stressed, because that could cause a miscarriage! Sounds day after day in the same house, with this cloud hanging over you constantly that at any moment your body may fail you and you may lose this child. Feel like the failure that can’t carry a child to term. Remember that you’re going to let everyone down if this doesn’t happen. Experience that, and tell me that utilizing scIence and technology to conceive and allow a more able- bodied, gracious and generous woman carry my child to term so I don’t have the anxiety of failing on top of being a full – time worker and being a parent to a toddler hanging over my head wouldn’t be the best thing. And why shouldn’t I be allowed to reward her for taking care of my child, and help support her in order to keep she and my child healthy and happy throughout the pregnancy? That’s really no one’s business.

    We have the best health care practices in the world right here in this country. If this were concerning cancer medication, or heart medication, would you be shipping me off to Europe? It’s ok to not believe in certain medical procedures. It’s not ok to encourage eliminating what could be a life – saving (in my case, yes) medical procedure that allows me to have children. To suggest people move to Europe to enjoy…. what exactly? Freedom? Isn’t that why Europeans came here in the first place? There’s a difference between personal beliefs versus what should be legal. More people should understand that.

    • Bob Jones

      Very sorry to hear about your fertility struggles. I too have experienced the sadness associated with miscarriage with my wife and to a small extent understand where you are coming from.

      My point is this…consider all unethical and immoral research that goes into these fertility treatments. We need to think beyond the feel good results and understand that the end does not justify the means.

      Europe has all but lost an semblance of morality. That is why their birth rate is well below replacement rate and they are losing their culture as a consequence. Their value on life is obvious to see as we observe more and more of those countries adopting abortion on demand and euthanasia.

      Once you go beyond the emotion and look at the state of the culture as it truly is, you will see that as we follow Europe in their moral decline, we are also following them in their loss of Freedom. Authentic Freedom is not doing whatever we want. It is the ability to do what is morally right and just.

      Pray for our country!

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