by Steven Ertelt
February 2, 2007
Phoenix, AZ (LifeNews.com) — A new bill introduced in the Arizona state Senate would require abortion practitioners to keep a better record of the abortions they do and the reasons women give for having one. The report would go to the state health department within weeks of the abortion and would help pro-life advocates eliminate the reasons for abortions.
Senate Majority Leader Thayer Verschoor is behind the proposal.
“There is a feeling out there and we need to know what’s going on (to) provide a better service to the folks in the health care industry,” Verschoor told the Arizona Capitol Times about the bill.
The senator did say, however, that the language of the bill needs to be modified to make sure patient privacy isn’t compromised.
“I don’t think we should over-intrude where we don’t have to,” he said. “There’s going to be some negotiation… If we don’t get the right agreement, it’s probably going to stay where it’s at.”
Ron Johnson, of the Arizona Catholic Conference, told the paper his group supports the bill but understands that "the bill is a work in progress."
“Either side of the issue that you fall on, it would be a good way for us to gauge the effectiveness of public policy, which is aimed at abortion, and see if it is effective or not," he explained about why the pro-life group supports the bill. "But without this good and reliable data, it’s hard to determine and quantify the effects of bills regarding abortion."
Despite their desire to see abortions be safe and legal, Eleanor Eisenberg, executive director of NARAL Pro-Choice Arizona, said he group opposed the bill.
Eisenberg told the newspaper it would place “onerous and burdensome requirements” on abortion practitioners. She also worried few people would want to do abortions if the bill was adopted.
John Jakubczyk of Arizona Right to Life says his group also supports the bill.
“It has always been our position, the position of many scholars, that abortions occur for more socio-economic reasons and because of the pressures by parents, boyfriends, husbands and employers and that women do not necessarily want abortion but find themselves forced to have abortion because of these socio-economic reasons,” Jacubczyk said.
“If there are accurate studies and information is gained in order to determine the real reasons behind high or low abortion rates, then we have a better way to address the real needs of women,” he told the Capitol Times.