Oklahoma Law to Reduce Abortions, Allow Women Ultrasounds Taken to Court
by Steven Ertelt
October 10, 2008
Oklahoma City, OK (LifeNews.com) — A comprehensive abortion bill intended to reduce abortions and to allow women a chance to see an ultrasound of their baby before the abortion begins has been taken to court by abortion advocates. The Center for Reproductive Rights, a pro-abortion law firm based in New York, filed a lawsuit against it.
The bill 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 includes an ultrasound provision to allow women to see pictures of their unborn child and hopefully seek alternatives. It disallows so-called wrongful life lawsuits where parents can sue doctors for the birth of a disabled baby instead of suggesting an abortion.
National Right to Life state legislative director Mary Balch told LifeNews.com she expected abortion businesses to file suit.
"We are not surprised that abortion providers would challenge Oklahoma’s ultrasound law," she said.
"The last thig they want to do is show the mother her living unborn child who has a beating heart and is very much alive. She just might choose life …and they would lose the sale," Balch added.
Gov. Brad Henry vetoed the measure, SB 1878, but members of the state legislature easily overrode the veto to put the law in place.
Republican state Senator Todd Lamb told the Associated Press he believes the law will withstand legal challenge.
The law firm filed the suit on behalf of Nova Health Systems which operates the Reproductive Services abortion business in Tulsa. The lawsuit claims the measure and its giving women more information before an abortion violates privacy rights, endanger’s women’s health, and violates their dignity.
Nova Health Systems has challenged Oklahoma laws in the past that are designed to reduce abortions.
It challenged a measure requiring the consent of one parent before a teenager can have an abortion. However, a three-judge panel of the 10th Circuit Court of Appeals in Denver rejected the request.
Tony Lauinger, the head of Oklahomans for Life, told LifeNews.com previously that the "pro-life bill helps pregnant women, unborn children, pro-life health-care professionals, and persons with disabilities."
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