On Sunday, we in the North Carolina Senate received a message from the governor, notifying us that he had vetoed Senate Bill 20 — the Care for Women & Children Act. It was both disheartening and telling that the governor chose Mother’s Day weekend to veto our bill, which protects the sanctity of human life and supports a strong family structure. 

Gov. Cooper’s decision to veto this bill was disappointing but not surprising. He has proven himself to be ultra-radical on this issue, having vetoed previous legislation that would have banned post-birth abortions (see Senate Bill 359 from the 2019 Session), which most of us recognize as murder. 

It is evident that Cooper’s stance is out of touch with the values and beliefs held by a majority of North Carolinians. As a parent, I know that children are a blessing, not a burden. I’m proud to stand alongside the millions of women who choose life for their unborn babies. On Tuesday, we voted to override the governor’s veto, successfully making our reasonable bill to limit abortions to 12 weeks of pregnancy law. This is a significant stride forward in safeguarding the well-being of unborn children. 

The Care for Women & Children Act reflects our unwavering commitment to promoting a culture of life. Contrary to the mischaracterizations made by Gov. Cooper, this law is not solely about limiting access to abortion. It provides comprehensive support for women facing difficult choices. In addition to limiting elective abortion after 12 weeks, our legislation includes vital provisions for paid parental leave and foster care programs. 

By offering tangible assistance, we’re empowering women to choose life with confidence, knowing that they have the support they need. This new law recognizes the importance of strong families and ensures that women are not cornered with limited options but instead offered a safety net of care. 

While some members of our party express concern that the law doesn’t go far enough to protect life, other members of our party feel otherwise. We must acknowledge the political realities of our own supermajority. Quite frankly, our bill was the most pro-life legislation that we could pass while maintaining enough votes to override the governor’s veto and become law. It is not a final step — it is a firm foundation in our ongoing mission to protect life. We must provide ongoing love and support for pregnant mothers and their babies. That ongoing effort will help create a culture of life that values all women and children.

Overriding Gov. Cooper’s veto of the Care for Women & Children Act marks a significant milestone in our collective effort to protect life in North Carolina. By limiting abortions to those that are safe, legal and rare and providing comprehensive support to women and families, we are advancing a culture of life that cherishes the inherent value of every human being. We will continue to work tirelessly, united in our commitment to protecting the life of the mother and the child.

This is an updated version at the request of the author.