< Back to S. 3102 (106th Congress, 1999–2000)

Text of the Putting Parents First Act

This bill was introduced on September 25, 2000, in a previous session of Congress, but was not enacted. The text of the bill below is as of Sep 25, 2000 (Introduced).

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Source: GPO

S 3102 IS

106th CONGRESS

2d Session

S. 3102

To require the written consent of a parent of an unemancipated minor prior to the referral of such minor for abortion services.

IN THE SENATE OF THE UNITED STATES

September 25 (legislative day, SEPTEMBER 22), 2000

Mr. ASHCROFT introduced the following bill; which was read twice and referred to the Committee on the Judiciary


A BILL

To require the written consent of a parent of an unemancipated minor prior to the referral of such minor for abortion services.

    Be it enacted by the Senate and House of Representatives of the United States of America in Congress assembled,

SECTION 1. SHORT TITLE.

    This Act may be cited as the ‘Putting Parents First Act’.

SEC. 2. FINDINGS.

    Congress finds that--

      (1) the family plays a unique role in our culture, it is the institution by which we inculcate and pass down many of our most cherished values;

      (2) the custody, care, and nurture of the child reside first in the parents, whose primary function and freedom include preparation for obligations the State can neither supply nor hinder;

      (3) parents have the right and duty to be involved in helping their minor children make important life decisions;

      (4) whether or not to beget a child is the most fundamental decision in our culture;

      (5) parental involvement in this crucial decision is necessary to ensure that the sanctity of human life is given appropriate consideration;

      (6) parental inclusion will result in the protection of human life; and

      (7) Congress is granted authority in section 5 of the 14th Amendment to the Constitution of the United States to enact laws that protect the right to life.

SEC. 3. PARENTAL CONSENT OR JUDICIAL BYPASS REQUIRED.

    (a) IN GENERAL- No individual shall knowingly perform an abortion upon or prescribe an abortifacient to a pregnant woman under the age of 18 years unless--

      (1) the attending physician has secured the informed written consent of the minor and a parent or guardian of the minor; or

      (2) the attending physician has secured the informed written consent of the minor and a court order waiving the need for the consent of a parent or guardian pursuant to the judicial bypass procedure described in section 4.

    (b) PENALTY- Any person who violates subsection (a) shall be fined not more than $25,000, or imprisoned for not more than 1 year, or both.

SEC. 4. JUDICIAL BYPASS.

    (a) IN GENERAL- A court of competent jurisdiction shall issue an order waiving the requirement for the informed written consent of a parent or guardian under section 3 if the court finds by clear and convincing evidence on an individual basis that--

      (1) the process of obtaining the informed written consent of such parent or guardian is not in the best interests of the minor petitioner; or

      (2) the minor petitioner is an emancipated minor.

    (b) Procedures-

      (1) CONFIDENTIAL PROCEEDINGS- A proceeding under this section shall be done under seal,

be confidential, and ensure the anonymity of the minor petitioner.

      (2) FILING- A minor or a minor’s legal representative may file a petition under this section using the initials of the minor.

      (3) PREFERENCE- Proceedings under this section shall--

        (A) be given preference over other proceedings;

        (B) be expedited to the extent possible; and

        (C) be concluded not later than 72 hours after the filing of the petition unless an extension is sought by the minor petitioner.

      (4) FINDINGS- A court that conducts proceedings under this section shall make written findings of fact and conclusions of law supporting its decision and shall maintain a confidential record of the proceedings to facilitate appellate review.

      (5) REVIEW- A decision under this section denying a request to waive the requirement for the informed consent of a parent or guardian under section 3 shall be eligible for expedited appellate review.

    (c) DEFINITIONS- In this section:

      (1) COURT OF COMPETENT JURISDICTION- The term ‘court of competent jurisdiction’ means any State court eligible to hear juvenile or family law matters, except that States may designate specific State courts to consider petitions for judicial bypass under this section.

      (2) EXPEDITED APPELLATE REVIEW- The term ‘expedited appellate review’ means review by whatever court juvenile or family law matters are generally appealed to, except that States may designate specific appellate courts to consider appeals under this section.

SEC. 5. APPLICATION OF STATE LAWS.

    The provisions of this Act shall not be construed to preempt provisions of State law that provide greater protections to parents of minors seeking abortions than the protections provided by this Act.