'Frozen embryos are children': Nikki Haley aligns with Alabama Supreme Court ruling

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Nikki Haley aligns with Alabama Supreme Court, declares frozen embryos as babies.—AFP/file
Nikki Haley aligns with Alabama Supreme Court, declares frozen embryos as babies.—AFP/file

Republican presidential hopeful Nikki Haley voiced her support for the controversial ruling by the Alabama Supreme Court, stating that frozen embryos from in-vitro fertilisation (IVF) should be recognised as babies, 

The court's decision, deeming embryos in test tubes as children, has reverberated through the reproductive medicine community, prompting legal uncertainties.

In an interview with NBC News, Haley endorsed the Alabama court's stance, asserting, "Embryos, to me, are babies. When you talk about an embryo, you are talking about, to me, that’s a life." 

The former South Carolina governor, who had her son through artificial insemination, distanced her personal experience from the IVF procedure involving embryos.

Haley, a prominent contender for the 2024 Republican presidential nomination, faces frontrunner Donald Trump in her home state of South Carolina. While trailing in polls, Haley remains steadfast in her candidacy. Trump has not publicly commented on the Alabama ruling, and his campaign representative has yet to respond to inquiries.

The Alabama decision, seen as shocking within the state with strict abortion laws, has left patients grappling with uncertainties about proceeding with IVF and the fate of their embryos. The University of Alabama at Birmingham temporarily halted in-vitro fertilisation due to concerns about legal repercussions.

White House Press Secretary Karine Jean-Pierre linked the chaos surrounding the Alabama ruling to the Supreme Court's 2022 decision overturning Roe v Wade, stating, "This is exactly the type of chaos that we expected." 

The ruling is the latest development in the contentious landscape of reproductive services following the 2022 overturning of Roe v. Wade, a decision that Republican candidates largely avoided addressing in the 2024 elections. 

Nikki Haley, advocating for Republican unity, emphasises consensus-seeking over divisive abortion debates, while Trump, credited for appointing justices contributing to Roe's overturn, maintains ambiguity on supporting a national abortion ban.