Louisiana House Committee Approves Bill for Ultrasound Before Abortion
by Steven Ertelt
June 4, 2010
Baton Rouge, LA (LifeNews.com) — The Louisiana House Health and Welfare Committee approved an ultrasound bill on Thursday that will help women get a view of their unborn child before deciding to have an abortion. The full House is expected to approve the bill and send it to Governor Bobby Jindal.
The measure would give women something abortion centers don’t normally provide: a chance to see an ultrasound of their unborn child before the abortion.
When used in pregnancy centers, women considering an abortion who see the ultrasound change their mind about the abortion about 80 percent of the time.
"After our testimony in support of the bill, Planned Parenthood did their best to derail this life-saving legislation," Benjamin Clapper of Louisiana Right to Life told LifeNews.com. "But thanks to Senator Broome’s courageous comments, we were able to push Planned Parenthood back and unanimously pass the committee."
During the testimony, Clapper said 30-40 places do free ultrasounds in the state and most abortion centers do an ultrasound prior to the abortion already, though women may not get to see it.
Sen. Sharon Weston Broome, a Democrat, said she wanted the state informed consent law on abortion to provide women even more information.
I felt it was necessary for us to go farther, Broome said, according to the Advocate newspaper. I call it an empowerment piece of legislation for women.
Julie Mickelberry, director of public affairs for Planned Parenthood of Louisiana, opposed the bill. She said Broome isn’t doing anything to help pregnant women and said the bill intrudes on the doctor-patient relationship.
You don’t know me or what I have done to help women in this community and throughout the state, Broome responded, according to the Baton Rogue newspaper. We have no physicians who have come in opposition to this bill from any of the statewide organizations, and I think that speaks volumes."
"I think women should have as much information as possible before they make a critical decision about having an abortion," Broome said.
The legislation also has the support of the Bioethics Defense Fund and BDF attorney Dorinda Bordlee drafted the bill.
"Science tells us when life begins," she told LifeNews.com. "The real question is when love begins. Ultrasound before abortion legislation is highly effective because of the unexpected love women experience when seeing the beauty of their unborn children."
Louisiana Right to Life previously told LifeNews.com it was excited about the bill.
"Over the past six months, we have been working with experts to craft this groundbreaking legislation empowering women to know the truth about abortion," the group said. "Not only will it require abortion facilities to perform ultrasounds before every abortion and show them to the woman (they can choose to look or not), but every woman will receive an ultrasound print out of their unborn child before their abortion. No other state has done this."
"As studies have shown, women are 2-3 times more likely to choose to parent or pursue adoption after seeing an ultrasound. Not only do we hope women will be fully informed about abortion, but in knowing the truth, they will have the freedom to make a better choice," it said.
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