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Should An Embryo Have Rights? First Of Its Kind Lawsuit Against Alabama Clinic Argues Yes




Embryoids like this one are created from stem cells and resemble very primitive human embryos. Scientist hope to use them to learn more about basic human biology and development.
Embryoids like this one are created from stem cells and resemble very primitive human embryos. Scientist hope to use them to learn more about basic human biology and development.
Courtesy of Rockefeller University

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The father of an unborn embryo is suing an Alabama women’s health clinic where his ex-girlfriend obtained an abortion.

Ryan Magers, the father, says he begged his then-girlfriend not to get an abortion in 2017 when she became pregnant. The judge in the case is contemplating whether to throw out the wrongful death suit, which is being called the first case of its kind in the United States. A probate judge earlier this year took the unusual step of opening an estate for the aborted embryo, known as “Baby Roe” in court filings, after Magers’ attorney cited a newly approved Alabama constitutional amendment saying its state policy to recognize the “rights of unborn children.”

The father, Ryan Magers, is serving as representative of the aborted embryo’s estate. An attorney for the clinic asked the judge to dismiss the lawsuit, arguing that its not a wrongful death case because abortion is legal.

With files from the Associated Press

Guests: 

Michele Bratcher Goodwin, Chancellor’s Professor of Law at the University of California, Irvine; she tweets @michelebgoodwin

Teresa Collett, professor of law at The University of St. Thomas in St. Paul, Minnesota and director of the school’s Prolife Center