All eyes turned to Alabama this week as lawmakers debated – and ultimately tabled – the nationâs strictest abortion bill.
The law would make it a felony to perform an abortion at any stage of pregnancy. Fireworks erupted in the state senate after Lt. Gov. Will Ainsworth quickly gaveled down a proposed amendment to exclude victims of rape or incest before lawmakers could vote or debate.
The furor pushed the vote to Tuesday, May 14.
It wasnât the first controversial moment from abortion debate. Earlier in the week, state Rep. John Rogers, D-Birmingham, uploaded a video to Twitter with his thoughts on the bill.
âSo you kill them now or you kill them later. You bring them in the world unwanted, unloved, you send them to the electric chair. So, you kill them now or you kill them later,â he said.
The comments generated an immediate backlash from both sides of the aisle.
Abortion wasnât the only issue on the legislative agenda. The state senate quickly passed a bill Thursday morning that would legalize medical marijuana. The bill now moves to the state house. If adopted, Alabama would become the 34th state to legalize medical marijuana.
Friday afternoon, the Alabama Department of Health announced that an infant believed to be infected by measles actually tested negative for the highly contagious infection. The five-month-old showed several symptoms of the illness, and had been counted as a presumptive positive case before the results came back.
Measles cases have been confirmed in 23 states and public health officials are urging parents to vaccinate children who may be behind on their shots.
Tragedy struck Bluff Park when two teenagers plunged 150 feet off the side of a cliff after going off the road. Authorities later identified the victims as two Birmingham City Schools students, aged 15 and 17.
A 19-year-old woman from Georgia slipped into rushing water Tuesday near Noccalula Falls in Gadsden. Rescue workers recovered her body downstream and pronounced her dead on the scene.
Former Jefferson County Commissioner Chris McNair, the father of one of the girls killed in the 16th Street Baptist Church bombing, died this week at age 93. His funeral will be held in the same church where his daughter died.
McNair leaves a complicated legacy that includes years of community leadership, but also a conviction for bribery.
Meanwhile, in Mobile members of the public strongly oppose efforts to impose a $3 to $6 toll on a new I-10 bridge. Transportation officials have said they need the toll income to pay for the project, but residents claim the fees would impose a large economic burden on commuters.