California Will Put Abortion Above Women’s Health if Brown Signs Bill for Non-Doctor Abortions

Opinion   |   Charmaine Yoest   |   Sep 25, 2013   |   9:54AM   |   Sacramento, CA

The abortion industry struggles – often very effectively – with a public relations dilemma. No one wants to fully admit what they support. So advocates hide their service that ends unborn lives with words like “choice,” fighting to remain an unaccountable Star Chamber of secretive practitioners of a procedure that impacts up to one in three American women.

But the truth is out there, unless you happen to live in California. And given some changes California’s political leaders and the pro-choice lobby are working on right now, it will only get worse.

What we think we know about the abortion industry in America comes from their voluntary self-reporting to perhaps the Guttmacher Institute, a pro-abortion think tank, or the Centers for Disease Control. But California and New York, two extremely populous “pro-choice” states, do not reveal the ugly realities of abortion data, because they refuse to track and to report on abortions in their states. And given the voluntary nature of the confessions of other clinic directors across the country, it is possible the facts as we know them in America are seen through the rose-colored lenses of abortion industry reporting.

This is not true in many other nations, where abortions are tracked like medical procedures. But in America, the abortion industry can have its cake and eat it too. They claim to be medical practitioners, but when it is time for oversight like any real, reputable medical profession, they hide behind the thin veneer of Roe v. Wade.

It’s all trust, but don’t verify, especially in California where the political elites have passed legislation this session to both allow non-doctors to perform surgical abortions and to exempt abortion clinics from the requirements for outpatient medical facilities. Currently, these measures are on the desk of Governor Jerry Brown, who is expected to sign them, though even if he doesn’t they will become law if he just chooses to ignore them until the legislative session ends. Bloomberg noted in a recent report that California “completely bucks the trend” toward greater protections for women.

In light of the Kermit Gosnell trial – the “house of horrors” where newly born infants were murdered after surviving abortions and where filthy conditions led to life-threatening conditions for women, and where yes, at least one woman died – these proposals seem unfathomable.

The abortion industry lobbies against clinic regulations by arguing they are not necessary – but consider this: Karnamaya Mongar died in part because emergency workers struggled to get a stretcher in and out of Gosnell’s abortion clinic which was in an old building with narrow hallways. The grand jury found that the building itself was a factor in a woman’s death and a jury convicted Gosnell of manslaughter.

States adopt standards for medical clinics to ensure that the best standard of care is available – that in an emergency lives can be saved, rather than lost through human error or physical obstacles. Right now, 42 states and the District of Columbia limit the performance of surgical abortions to licensed physician, and 29 states regulate clinics to some degree to ensure the safety of women.

It is fascinating to note that while the Attorney General of West Virginia Patrick Morrisey recently asked for input on how to make women safer in an abortion clinic, lawmakers in California were actively working to expose them to greater risk — for the second time. Are these the actions of an altruistic industry?

Imagine a world in which bankers, restaurant owners or even cigarette manufacturers merely reported that all their work was problem-free without ever doing an audit of the books, or an inspection of the facility or examined the medical research on risks of the product.

The stakes for the women of California – indeed for women everywhere — are high given the health risks of abortion to women, detailed in a growing number of medical studies.



California taxpayers should know that “safe, legal and rare” is a myth for today’s sophisticated abortion lobbyist. California women should know that if Governor Brown does not veto the bills, the medical standards in their state will be lowered.

For too long, the abortion industry has hidden behind the U.S. Constitution to increase its profits, no matter the health risks to women. How many must die before we put women’s lives ahead of abortion industry profits? Note: Charmaine Yoest is the president of Americans United for Life.