Wyoming House lawmakers passed an important pro-life bill Friday that would require women to wait 48 hours between receiving informed consent materials and having an abortion.
The AP reports state House Bill 140 passed in a 36-22 vote, and now heads to the state Senate.
Waiting periods are an important part of the informed consent process before a woman goes through with aborting her unborn baby. They give pregnant mothers time to consider information about the risks of abortion, their unborn baby’s development and the support available if they choose life. They also help protect women from making hasty, uninformed decisions that they later may regret.
Here’s more about the Wyoming bill:
The proposed bill would require women to wait 48 hours before undergoing the procedure. The waiting period would not be enforced if the abortion is necessary to save a woman’s life.
During debate on the proposal Friday, proponents say a 48-hour wait makes sense in the case of someone planning to undergo a surgical procedure while opponents the state would be interfering in a difficult decision between a woman and her doctor.
Currently, 27 states have a waiting period requirement in place, and 35 require informed consent counseling, according to the Guttmacher Institute. Waiting periods range from 24 to 75 hours. The abortion industry is challenging several state informed consent laws in court.
Informed consent laws help protect unborn babies from abortion, and the abortion industry knows it. Studies have found that when women see ultrasound images of their unborn babies, they are more likely to choose life. A 2017 study out of the University of California San Francisco also suggests that some women do change their minds about abortion as a result of informed consent laws.