by Steven Ertelt
June 8, 2007
Concord, NH (LifeNews.com) — The New Hampshire state Senate put the finishing touches on a bill that will repeal the state’s parental notification on abortion law. The measure now heads to Democratic Gov. John Lynch who has said he will sign it and effectively leave parents in the dark about their teen’s decision to have an abortion.
The Senate voted 15-9 for the repealer bill and the state House has previously signed off on it on a 226-130 vote.
The notification statue, originally passed by the legislature in 2003, has never been enforced and went all the way to the Supreme Court, which upheld it in part. But abortion advocates want to take the measure off the books entirely and replace it with a law that will be much weaker.
Earlier decisions found the law unconstitutional but the high court ruled that parts of the law that should be voided could be taken out and the rest of the law could remain intact.
Abortion advocates lobbied members of the Senate to simply vote to defeat the law.
"Far and away the cleanest solution to the problem we face today is to repeal the bill, start with a clean slate," Martin Honigberg, a Planned Parenthood of Northern New England lawyers, said.
Before the House voted for the repeal bill the first time, Rep. Fran Wendelboe sponsored an amendment to improve the law to meet concerns brought up in court. The vote on the amendment came in at 213-135 against it.
"It is not a test of how pro-choice or pro-life you are: It is a parental rights issue," Wendelboe said before the vote. "You can’t get a tattoo, or get your ears pierced, you can’t smoke, you can’t ride a bicycle under 16 without a helmet because the state knows better."
Pro-life advocates have been disappointed by the votes and New Hampshire Citizens for Life president Roger Stenson told LifeNews.com, “Parents have a primordial right to protect and counsel their children. Children have the right to their parents’ involvement in their lives."
He said the legislators who voted to get rid of the involvement law "trampled on every family in our state."
He said the vote would encourage secret abortions on minors with people who sexually abuse them taking them for abortions without their parents knowing.
Related web sites:
New Hampshire legislature – https://www.gencourt.state.nh.us