Earlier this month, while ruling that Georgia’s ban on abortion after about six weeks could go into effect, the 11th Circuit Court of Appeals also agreed that “personhood” could be redefined to include embryos and fetuses, giving the same rights to clumps of cells as walking-around humans. Now, the Georgia Department of Revenue has issued guidance for people to claim embryos as dependents on their taxes. No, this is not satire.
In a press release published on Monday, the state writes that in light of both the Supreme Court overturning Roe v. Wade and the appeals court upholding Georgia’s abortion law, “the Department will recognize any unborn child with a detectable human heartbeat…as eligible for the Georgia individual income tax dependent exemption.” Moving forward, taxpayers can claim “a dependent personal exemption…in the amount of $3,000 for each unborn child.” The department says that taxpayers must provide “relevant medical records or other supporting documentation” if requested. The Atlanta-Journal Constitution notes that the law also “allows expectant mothers to file for child support to cover the costs of pregnancy and delivery,” and requires unborn children, a.k.a. fetuses, to be counted for Georgia’s census records.
While tax deductions might sound nice—who doesn’t like those?!—and they could be helpful to low-income people who want to be pregnant, the fact that Georgia is giving embryos the same rights as the person whose womb they’re in is obviously terrifying. What happens if a person claims an unborn child on their taxes and then has a miscarriage? What happens if they claim the unborn child and then travel out of state for an abortion? These are obviously just two of about a million questions the new law raises.
After the 2019 law was upheld last month, Julia Kaye, a staff attorney for the ACLU Reproductive Freedom Project, said the move would allow “Gov. [Brian] Kemp and his radical political allies…to force Georgians to carry pregnancies and give birth against their will, with profound medical risk and life-altering consequences.” In a statement, Kemp had said he was “overjoyed.”
In other abortion news, the executive director of a “crisis pregnancy center” has told The Washington Post that 13-year-olds can be “successful mothers” and that she would have tried to convince the 10-year-old rape victim who was denied an abortion in her home state of Ohio to have the child. Meanwhile, a group of senators have unveiled a bill to codify abortion rights, but it is expected to fail, because the Senate is filled with Republicans who think embryos are people and 10-year-olds should be forced to be parents.
First Capitol rioter convicted gets more than seven years in prison
And his daughters have thoughts about it…some of which aren’t wrong!
We are once again asking you to petition your government for a minimum congressional IQ requirement