ANNAPOLIS, Md. (AP) — The Maryland Senate voted unanimously Tuesday to end parental rights of rapists over children conceived through rape.
The 45-0 vote sends the bill to the House, where an identical measure has advanced for a vote later this week. Both chambers have made the bill a priority this session after it failed to pass for nearly a decade. Last year, lawmakers were criticized for failing to pass the bill after its 90-day session ended in April.
Sen. Robert Zirkin, a Democrat who chairs the Senate Judicial Proceedings Committee, said the measure has posed complicated issues involving due process for the accused, because the issue can involve fathers who have not been criminally convicted of rape. Zirkin also said the bill poses issues related to laws designed to protect victims. While the measure has been improved over the years, Zirkin said lawmakers will need to keep working to make the …