Nebraska Webcam Abortion Ban Goes Into Effect Saturday

State   |   Steven Ertelt   |   Aug 26, 2011   |   11:04AM   |   Washington, DC

Two new pro-life laws go into effect in Nebraska on Saturday — one that requires teenagers to get parental consent before getting an abortion and another that is receiving more attention, that bans webcam abortions.

Nebraska Gov. Dave Heineman signed into law both bills in May in the presence of the bill’s sponsor, Senator Tony Fulton, its prioritizer, Senator Dave Bloomfield and Julie Schmit-Albin and Sandy Danek of Nebraska Right to Life as well as Greg Schleppenbach of Nebraska Catholic Conference.

The webcam abortion ban was Nebraska Right to Life’s priority legislation for the 2011 session and it extends the standard of care for abortion to provide that every abortion, whether chemical or surgical, is done by a licensed physician physically present in the same room as the pregnant woman or girl.

The legislation comes in response to Planned Parenthood of the Heartland, which operates abortion centers in Iowa and Nebraska, starting the practice of telemed abortions  in Iowa — where women are denied the opportunity to meet with a physician in person before using the dangerous abortion drug that has killed dozens of women and injured 2,200 in the U.S alone, as the FDA reports.

The FDA suggests an in-person visit with a physician before using the mifepristone abortion drug because the patient needs to be evaluated for ectopic pregnancies that cause death or serious injury if an abortion drug is taken in such situations. But the Planned Parenthood abortion business is beginning to use this webcam process in Iowa and is thought to be considering expanding it to more rural and remote areas of other states because of the expense and difficulty in recruiting abortion practitioners and getting them to all of the Planned Parenthood centers in a certain state.

Pro-life groups like Nebraska Right to Life say the bill is needed to stop the abortion business from putting profits over patients — and to reduce abortions.

“The implementation of the Stop Web Cam Abortions bill is a significant victory for pro-life in our State because any time we can not only keep Planned Parenthood of the Heartland at bay but thwart their plans for expansion, then we indeed are doing our job,” Schmit-Albin tells LifeNews. “LB 521 was Nebraska Right to Life’s priority legislation and what we devoted the first half of the year to because we saw the clear threat of Planned Parenthood of the Heartland bringing their chemical web cam abortion scheme over from Iowa into our State. They can’t do that now.”

“Since the abortion industry comes up with new methods of killing unborn children, it’s up to States to address something that wasn’t even occurring when Roe v. Wade came into being in 1973,” she said. “Planned Parenthood of the Heartland initiated Web Cam chemical abortions in Iowa in 2008 and has done over 2,000 of them there since then. Our Legislature saw that situation and rightly concluded that Nebraska did not need to be the next testing ground for Planned Parenthood’s desire to expand chemical abortions beyond urban areas of the State.”

Nebraska joins Kansas, Oklahoma and Arizona in passing a ban on webcam or telemed abortions.

Planned Parenthood of the Heartland announced months ago that it intends to expand in Nebraska including heading to Fremont, Grand Island, Hastings, Kearney, Norfolk and North Platte where the telemed abortion process may be used.

Schmit-Albin says women who get the abortion drug without an in-person exam and visit with a physician are left to deal with any consequences alone and she pointed to stories of “young girls being sent home to hemorrhage and deliver their babies at home not knowing what to expect.”

“This isn’t about women’s access to “healthcare” but more about Planned Parenthood reaching its tentacles across the vast expanse of our state into rural areas where they have not been and inflicting a dangerous drug cocktail on women and young girls who might end up in their local emergency rooms hours away from the abortionist who started the abortion,” she said.

She said women visiting Planned Parenthood for the telemed abortions “are told by Planned Parenthood to act like they are having a miscarriage if they go into an ER after having problems at home. So the local ER doctor doesn’t even know that her problem is due to a chemical abortion.”

“How is this about improving women’s health?” Schmit-Albin asked. “It’s all about the bottom line for Planned Parenthood: money.”

On the parental consent bill, the state health department says 143 girls under the age of 18 got abortions in Nebraska last year and 2,464 abortions were done in total.

ACTION:  Contact Gov. Heineman at and thank him for signing the bills into law.