Oklahoma Governor Brad Henry Vetoes Comprehensive Bill Limiting Abortions
by Steven Ertelt
April 16, 2008
Oklahoma City, OK (LifeNews.com) — Oklahoma Gov. Brad Henry vetoed a bill on Wednesday that would allow women considering an abortion a chance to see an ultrasound of their unborn child beforehand. When used in pregnancy centers the ultrasounds convince an overwhelming percentage of women to keep their baby.
Though Henry vetoed the bill, the Oklahoma Senate agreed in a bipartisan 38-10 vote for Senate Bill 1878 last week but 17 votes are needed to sustain a veto.
The bill also includes protection for the conscience rights of health care professionals to refuse to participate in abortions, puts more limits in place on the dangerous abortion drug RU 486, and makes sure women are not pressured or forced into having an abortion.
The measure also disallows so-called wrongful life lawsuits where parents can sue doctors for the birth of a disabled baby instead of suggesting an abortion.
In addition, teenagers who want an abortion would require written consent beforehand and it includes a section making sure the abortion practitioner who dispenses the dangerous abortion drug does so within FDA guidelines and reports medical problems to state officials.
"While I support reasonable restrictions on abortion, this legislation does not provide an essential exemption for victims of rape and incest," Governor Henry said in a statement accompanying the veto.
"By forcing the victims of such horrific acts to undergo and view ultrasounds after they have made such a difficult and heartbreaking decision, the state victimizes the victim for a second time," he added.
"It would be unconscionable to subject victims of rape and incest to such treatment. Because of this critical flaw, I cannot in good conscience sign this legislation," he said.
This is the second time henry has vetoed a bill that would put abortion limits in place.
He vetoed a measure that banned the use of state funds or facilities for abortions but let a revised bill including rape and incest exceptions in the ban become state law.
Tony Lauinger of Oklahomans for Life previously told LifeNews.com his group supports the measure.
"The unborn child needs every bit of help we can give," he said.
He said the "pro-life bill helps pregnant women, unborn children, pro-life health-care professionals, and persons with disabilities."
ACTION: Contact Oklahoma Gov. Brad Henry and let him know your thoughts on his vetoing the abortion limits. You can find complete contact information at https://www.governor.state.ok.us/contact.php
Related web sites:
Oklahomans for Life – https://www.okforlife.org