Missouri House Approves Abortion Waiting Period, Stopping Pressured Abortions
by Steven Ertelt
March 30, 2010
Jefferson City, MO (LifeNews.com) — The Missouri state House approved a bill today that would stop forced abortions and put a 24-hour abortion waiting period in place. The measure is designed to provide women more information than they otherwise receive from abortion centers.
The Special Standing Committee on Children and Families signed off on House Bill 1327 last month and, today, the full House voted 113-37 in favor of the legislation.
The measure requires abortion businesses, orally and in writing, to provide women information 24 hours before an abortion on the development of the unborn child, and long-term medical and mental health problems women can expect from the abortion.
The measure also allows women to find out about abortion alternatives and to see an ultrasound of the unborn child, according to a Missouri Statehouse Examiner report.
HB 1327 also makes it unlawful for a woman’s family, friends, workplace or school to coerce her into having an abortion and to require abortion centers to place posters in their waiting rooms informing women they have the right to not have an abortion.
Speaker Pro Tem Bryan Pratt, a Republican, said during the debate, according tot he St. Louis Post Dispatch, that the bill would be the strongest pro-life bill the House has passed in Missouris history.
The debate took place for approximately two hours as hundreds of people came to the state capitol for Missouri Right to Life’s annual lobby day.
Abortion advocates attacked the measure with Rep. Mary Still, a Democrat from Columbia, calling it a mean-spirited effort and Rep. Beth Low, a Kansas City Democrat, saying it is a cute political ploy."
But Rep. Cynthia Davis, a Republican, said not all women support abortion and oppose the bill.
Abortion is a kind of domestic violence as well, she said. Women don’t naturally want to kill their offspring. Women who are loved, cared for and supported don’t mind having their own child.
Davis was behind a similar bill last year that the House approved. The Senate passed a similar measure but neither chamber would relent on whether the bill should be applied to all abortion centers or just those open one day a week.
Pam Fichter, the president of Missouri Right to Life, told LifeNews.com that the Senate bill last year "endangers Missouri women seeking abortions."
The Senate bill "creates a two-tiered system of enforcement based on how frequently an abortion clinic does abortions," Fichter explained then.
"Abortion clinics that perform abortions no more than one-day-a-week (supposedly only the Planned Parenthood clinic in Columbia, Mo.) are exempt from the new informed consent provisions offering an ultrasound, fetal development information, abortion alternatives, etc. for three years," she said.
"But such one-day-a-week clinics must (supposedly) comply with the old, 2003 womens right to know law," Fichter said. "Clinics that perform abortions more than one-day-a-week (one in Kansas City and two in St. Louis) will be exempt from the 2003 law while (supposedly) complying with the new law."
Fichter says this uneven enforcement will come up in court and cause even more problems.
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