by Steven Ertelt
March 14, 2008
Frankfort, KY (LifeNews.com) — The Kentucky House failed to get enough votes for a discharge petition to get an abortion-ultrasound bill out of a committee with a chairman apparently unwilling to allow a hearing on it. The measure would allow women a chance to see an ultrasound of the unborn baby before the abortion.
When shown to women in pregnancy centers, more than 70 percent decided to keep their baby rather than have an abortion.
Lawmakers hope the bill will reduce the number of Kentucky abortions even further.
The Senate has already approved Senate Bill 40 but pro-abortion Rep. Kathy Stein, who heads the House Judiciary Committee, has failed to assure legislators she will hold a hearing on the bill.
As a result, Rep. Joe Fischer used the special motion to try to bring the bill out of committee and put it on the House floor for a debate and vote.
Some 40 members of the chamber supported the discharge petition while only 16 voted against it. However, the special motion requires 51 votes to succeed.
All of the House Republicans voted for the motion along with seven Democrats.
After the vote, Stein told the Louisville Courier-Journal she hasn’t decided whether she will call for a hearing on the bill but said she thinks it’s too early in the process for a discharge petition and that she wants to move House bills first before considering measures from the Senate.
"We have a lot of bills that haven’t been heard," she said. "We will begin hearing Senate bills next week."
SB 40 requires abortion practitioners to do an ultrasound on a woman seeking an abortion and to offer her the chance to see the image of the unborn child.
The bill also includes a state version of the federal partial-birth abortion ban.
It would ensure the gruesome three-day-long abortion method is prohibited if the federal law is ever reversed and to allow local prosecutors to assist federal authorities in enforcing it.
The legislation also calls for a face to face meeting with an abortion practitioner 24 hours prior to the abortion so there is an assurance that women receive information about abortion’s risks and alternatives beforehand.
The Senate Judiciary Committee approved the measure on a unanimous vote. Then, the State Senate approved SB 40 by a bipartisan 32-4 margin with only four Democrats opposing the bill.