Mississippi Genius: Non-Abortion Ban May Ban Abortions

State   |   Steven Ertelt   |   Apr 17, 2012   |   1:39PM   |   Washington, DC

The state of Mississippi is down to one abortion facility and the governor signed a bill yesterday that exemplifies the kind of genius seen nowadays in pro-life legislation. A measure that protects women from unscrupulous abortion practitioners who have no ability to admit them to a hospital in cases of botched abortions may be the ticket to essentially shutting down the last remaining abortion clinic in the state.

Yesterday, Mississippi Gov. Phil Bryant signed a bill putting new requirements on the books for abortion practitioners who operate in the state. They would have to be certified in the state as an obstetrician-gynecologist with admitting privileges at a local hospital in case a botched abortion requires a woman to be immediately hospitalized.

Backers of a personhood amendment that supposedly would ban abortions in the state — it wouldn’t — were unsuccessful in getting Mississippi voters to approve the idea but this bill that detractors say might merely regulate abortion may accomplish significantly much more in terms of stopping abortions in the Magnolia State.

Terri Herring of Pro-Life Mississippi talked with LifeNews about the genius behind the legislation and says botched abortions were what drove out the second-to-last abortion facility.

“The second to the last abortion clinic on Briarwood Drive in Jackson closed when the abortionist botched an abortion that led to the death of a young woman in Alabama,” Herring says. “Dr. Booker, the former abortionist at this last abortion clinic lost a recent medical malpractice lawsuit. The woman sued him after almost dying from abortion related injuries. She won the case and was awarded a judgment of over $600,000 that she is unable to collect because neither Booker nor the clinic carried any insurance.”

“Now we have out of state doctors who fly in and fly out without rendering proper care to Mississippi women. They do not currently have admitting privileges, but beginning on July 1st they must qualify or stop performing abortions,” Herring said.

Herring says the legislation is almost certainly going to wind up in court as the sole remaining abortion facility attempts to allow its out-of-state doctors to do abortions even though they have no admitting privileges locally.

“We rejoice in the signing of this bill today, but we cautiously await decisions to be made by the courts – who still overwhelmingly support the rights of the born over the unborn,” she said. “The owners of the Jackson Women’s Health Organization are being required to surrender their license in Alabama on May 18th.   The same doctor who performs abortions in Jackson injured three women in one day at their Birmingham clinic. It is time to make sure abortion doctors are capable of truly caring for women by requiring them to face the same standards as every other Ambulatory Surgical Facility in the state. What other facility does not require their doctors to have hospital admitting privileges?”

“There are seven other states that require admitting privileges for abortion clinics. Hospital admitting privileges are required regularly in the medical community. If this clinic cannot meet the standards for proper medical care they should not be allowed to treat Mississippi’s women,” she added.

Herring told LifeNews that the bill, aside from its ability to potentially shut down the last abortion center, is good in and of itself, for holding abortion facilities and abortion practitioners to the same expectations the state has for legitimate physicians and medical centers.

“Abortion clinics regularly get by with lower standards of care because most physicians uphold their Hippocratic oath and refuse to perform abortions. Those who perform abortions are often not well qualified or held to the same standards as the rest of the medical community,” she said.

“It is time to make abortion a thing of the past in Mississippi.   Like the civil rights era, I believe our nation will one day grieve the days when we allowed abortion to be used as birth control up until the day of birth,” Herring concluded.