Kansas Lawmakers Introduce Abortion Business Regs After Abortion Deaths
by Steven Ertelt
March 3, 2005
Topeka, KS (LifeNews.com) — After previously failing to pass a law regulating abortion businesses in the state thanks to a veto from Governor Kathleen Sebelius, lawmakers are trying again. They have an increased desire to see the law be put on the books after two women apparently died in the last two months at a Wichita late-term abortion facility.
The new legislation would ensure that the seven abortion facilities in Kansas are licensed by the Kansas Department of Health and Environment.
The abortion businesses would have to follow a slate of regulations that are similar to ones legitimate medical surgical centers must follow.
"We didn’t want to waste effort and time and perhaps desensitize people to this issue," Rep. Peggy Long-Mast, a Republican and the measure’s chief sponsor, told the Topeka Capital-Journal newspaper.
She said the news reports of the abortion deaths prompted her to bring the bill back.
Julie Burkhart, a spokeswoman for abortion facility run by late-term abortion practitioner George Tiller, called the bill "prejudicial" because it only regulates abortion facilities.
Governor Sebelius vetoed the measure (HB 2176) two years ago and has acknowledged that it may have contributed to the deaths of two women at Tiller’s abortion business.
After the death of a woman at Tiller’s Wichita Women’s Health Center on January 13, Sebelius instructed the Kansas Board of Healing Arts to investigate.
She also asked for the BOHA’s "determination of whether H.B. 2176, passed by the 2003 legislature would have in any way mitigated or prevented the patient’s death."
Mary Kay Culp of Kansans for Life says Sebelius’ concerns about women’s safety at abortion facilities is too late in coming.
"Governor Sebelius’ veto ignored the legislature’s informed recognition of the desperate need for effective regulation of Kansas abortion clinics, and for that she should be held accountable," Culp explained.
Part of Sebelius’ reason for vetoing the bill may have had to do with politics.
Culp’s group points out that Tiller’s Pro Kan Do Political Action Committee and his abortion business donated more than $20,000 to her campaigns between 1994 and 2002. In 2003, Tiller lobbied strongly against passage of the abortion facility regulation bill.
"Kathleen Sebelius is protecting the abortion industry and her donors, not women," Culp concluded.
Related web sites:
Kansans for Life – https://www.kfl.org