More states restricting abortions

And the impact is not insignificant — and could eventually lead all the way to the Supreme Court.

Details, from USA TODAY:

Legislatures in more than 30 states are weighing — and in some cases passing  many fast-moving bills to restrict abortion rights in a blitz that could prompt the Supreme Court to revisit the issue.

On Tuesday, Idaho‘s Legislature approved a ban on most abortions after 20 weeks of pregnancy.

South Dakota Gov. Dennis Daugaard, a Republican, last month signed a bill mandating a three-day waiting period for abortions and requiring women seeking abortions to get counseling at a pregnancy help center. ArizonaRepublican Gov. Jan Brewer last month signed a bill making it a felony to perform or provide money for abortions sought because of the fetus’s race or sex.

Abortion bills “are moving in states where they haven’t before,” says Mary Spaulding Balch, state legislation director for the National Right to Life Committee, which opposes abortion. Another surprise is “the speed at which these bills are going through,” she says.

“What’s different this year is that, as a result of the election, there are a lot more anti-abortion” state legislators, says Donna Crane, policy director for NARAL Pro-Choice America, which supports abortion rights. Republican gains in the 2010 election gave them control of both chambers in 26 legislatures; Democrats control 15.

NARAL Pro-Choice America is monitoring 362 abortion bills in this legislative session; in 2010, 174 bills were tracked.

Some bills would block public or private insurance coverage for abortions, others would ban most abortions 20 weeks after conception, and others would require pregnant women to have ultrasounds before having abortions.

Some bills are moving quickly.

This week, a Florida Senate committee passed a bill that would require ultrasounds before abortions. Last week, an Ohio House committee approved a bill that would ban abortions after a fetal heartbeat is detected. The Kansas Legislature last week passed a bill banning most abortions after the 21st week of pregnancy.

Crane and Balch disagree on the message behind the spate of abortion legislation.

“We are absolutely certain that this is not what Americans voted for in November 2010,” Crane says. In addition to a new crop of conservative legislators, she says, 29 governors are considered “anti-choice” by her organization.

Balch attributes the momentum to new legislators of both parties who share her organization’s goal of providing “protection for the unborn child.”

Check out more, including an interactive map, at the link.

  • Jim Dotter

    Thanks be to God!

  • pagansister

    If this continues, women will have to go overseas, as in the past before Roe V Wade. That’s not good news.

  • Annie

    This is great. May they also introduce and pass some legislation in the same states to support those who feel they have no option but abortion – to support those babies once they’re born – to show true respect for the dignity of all human life from conception to natural death.

  • http://www.gerardnadal.com Gerard Nadal

    Annie,

    Who will be supporting the babies? The taxpayers?

    That’s the wrong way to go. Responsibility begins before the clothes come off and objectivity flies out the window. Holding a gun to the baby’s head and telling the taxpayers to pay up or the kid gets it isn’t pro-life.

    Plenty of faith-based and secular groups run pregnancy resource centers and put women in touch with local social service departments who already support women with WIC, welfare, food stamps, medicaid, job training, vocational training, child care, etc.

    I hear many who suggest that pro-lifers need to assume responsibility for the mother and child in exchange for the child’s life. That’s called extortion, and it’s morally indefensible. An unexplored middle ground is something called sexual continence (self-control).

  • Annie

    Why must everyone assume the worst or the extreme in what I post? I am not advocating anything resembling extortion and it pains me to have you assert that I do!

    I simply suggested that banning abortion is not and should not be the beginning and end of the story. So much is played out in politics here about abortion – Republicans campaign on it, yet in practical terms, do little to change the status quo – these latest moves are at least a step forward in that many more politicians are doing more than paying lip service to protection of the unborn.

    What amazes me, and again – this may be skewed by my perspective having grown up in a society with free Catholic education, and free healthcare, is the widespread lack of charity displayed by many in US society towards those less fortunate. Everyone shouts to protect the taxpayer – it’s all I ever hear – and yes, I fully agree that everyone needs to hold themselves accountable and pull themselves up by their own boot straps. However, we as a society MUST provide the safety net – be that via individual actions and/or government assistance to protect those who would dearly love to pull themselves up by their own bootstraps, but can’t because they don’t even have the boots!

  • Don from NH

    Justice Affiliation
    John Roberts
    (Chief Justice) Catholic
    Stephen G. Breyer Jewish
    Ruth Bader Ginsburg Jewish
    Anthony M. Kennedy Catholic
    Antonin Scalia Catholic
    David H. Souter Episcopalian
    John Paul Stevens Protestant
    Clarence Thomas Catholic
    Samuel Alito Catholic

    Five out of the four chief justices are Catholic, why are we still talking about Roe v Wade.

    The Catholic on the Bench should bring this back for consideration, why aren’t the bishops speaking out and denying the justices communion.

  • Don from NH

    Justice Affiliation
    John Roberts
    (Chief Justice) Catholic
    Stephen G. Breyer Jewish
    Ruth Bader Ginsburg Jewish
    Anthony M. Kennedy Catholic
    Antonin Scalia Catholic
    David H. Souter Episcopalian
    John Paul Stevens Protestant
    Clarence Thomas Catholic
    Samuel Alito Catholic

    Five out of the nine chief justices are Catholic, why are we still talking about Roe v Wade.

    The Catholic on the Bench should bring this back for consideration, why aren’t the bishops speaking out and denying the justices communion.


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