The North Carolina state House has approved a strong pro-life bill that has the potential of closing more abortion clinics in the state — following the closure of one that couldn’t meet basic health and safety standards.
The state House approved SB 353 on a 74-41 vote and the bill now heads back to the state Senate for a concurrence vote after changes in the House. The bill passed the Senate, 27-14.
The pro-life bill would regulate abortion facilities to meet requirements similar to ambulatory surgical centers — a stipulation that may put abortion clinics out of business that can’t meet the requirements.
The measure would prohibit sex selection abortions which 76% of North Carolinians support (Civitas March 2013 poll) and 85% of Americans support (Polling Company April 2013 poll). Some six states have already banned sex-selection abortions.
The bill includes an opt-out of abortion in the federal exchange and the city and county employee health plan except for the life of the mother and in cases of rape and incest. An April 2011 CNN poll found 61% oppose public funding for abortion, consistent with other poll done by other groups and 22 other states have stopped abortion funding under the Obamacare exchange.
The measure would require abortionists to be physically present to prevent web cam abortions and the misuse of abortion inducing drugs.
“Our hard work on behalf of the most defenseless among us is not over. We are so very close to passing our pro-life provisions which will save the lives of many unborn children. Please press on knowing that the babies have no one to speak for them except us. They need us to be their voice at the legislature,” North Carolina Right to Life said about the bill.
The group added: “North Carolina Right to Life supports SB353 because it meets all of our objectives for this legislative session of banning web cam abortions, opting out of the federal exchange and the city and county employee health plans, and banning sex selection abortions.”
The Judiciary B Committee voted Wednesday to roll all the pro-life provisions of HB695 into SB353, Health and Safety Law Changes, with some modifications to accommodate the concerns of the Governor and his DHHS.
An abortion clinic in the state was shut down earlier this week for posing problems for women’s health.
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Last month, North Carolina officials allowed a southeast Charlotte abortion clinic to reopen, but vow they will closely monitor operations at A Preferred Woman’s Health Center. The abortion clinic was shut down in early May, the second time the clinic has lost its license.
The first occasion was in February 2007, when, as the Charlotte Observer reported, “state investigators found as many as 16 safety and regulatory issues at the clinic, according to a letter DHHS sent the clinic.”
More recently, investigators found that staffers were administering methotrexate (an abortifacient) in liquid form. The regimen requires that methotrexate be injected or taken in pill form.
ACTION: Call, email, fax the Governor to sign SB353 into law after the House concurs. His contact information is here.