On Wednesday, former South Carolina Gov. Nikki Haley said she agreed with an Alabama Supreme Court ruling last week that an embryo created through in-vitro fertilization (IVF) is a child. 

In a case originating from Mobile, LePage v. Mobile Infirmary Clinic, Inc., the Supreme Court held in a 7-2 decision on Friday that parents of frozen embryos killed at an IVF clinic when an intruder tampered with an IVF freezer may proceed with a wrongful death lawsuit against the clinic for alleged negligence. 

The University of Alabama at Birmingham responded to the ruling by announcing on Wednesday the UAB Division of Reproductive Endocrinology and Infertility has paused IVF treatments "as it evaluates the Alabama Supreme Court's decision that a cryopreserved embryo is a human being."

"We are saddened that this will impact our patients' attempt to have a baby through IVF, but we must evaluate the potential that our patients and our physicians could be prosecuted criminally or face punitive damages for following the standard of care for IVF treatments," a UAB spokesperson said.

Haley, a long-shot candidate for the Republican Presidential nomination, said in an interview with NBC News on Wednesday that she supported the ruling. 

"Embryos, to me, are babies," Haley said, "I had artificial insemination. That is how I had my son. So when you look at it, is one thing is to save sperm or save eggs, but when you talk about an embryo, you are talking about, to me, that's a life. And so I do see where that's coming from when they talk about that."

Haley continued, "This is one where we need to be incredibly respectful and sensitive about it. I know that when my doctor came in, we knew what was possible and what wasn't."

"We knew before we went in exactly what we were looking at. Every woman needs to know, with her partner, what she's looking at. And then when you look at that, then you make the decision that's best for your family," Haley said.

To connect with the author of this story or to comment, email caleb.taylor@1819News.com.

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