A motion by Conservative Kitchener Centre MP Stephen Woodworth, to look at when life begins, was debated in the House of Commons Thursday but already, there seems little support for it.

Woodworth’s bill, if passed, would see a committee set up to review the part of Criminal Code that says a fetus does not become a human until it leaves its mother’s body.

In his opening statement Woodworth said that definition is outdated. “Perhaps that ancient definition made sense when leaches and blood-letting were standard medical practices, but does it make sense in the 21st century?” he asked.

Attacks on the motion came from MP’s on both sides of the house, voicing concern that the bill could erode women’s rights.

Liberal MP Hedy Fry said the definition of fetal personhood is closely linked to abortion law. “So, the Liberal Party does not support any legislative action that would reopen the debate on abortion.”

The Prime Minister himself has vowed to vote against the motion and Tory MP Gordon O’Connor spoke out against it as well, saying he doesn’t want women to go back to an era when they were forced to obtain abortions illegally.

Thursday’s debate was only the first and it could be voted on as early as June.

tiffany.hendsbee@570news.rogers.com