Invasive Abortion ‘Ultrasound’ Bill Passes House Committee
The Pennsylvania House Health Committee voted yesterday to advance something they’re calling the “Women’s Right to Know Act,” which would allow a woman to take a look at an ultrasound and listen to the fetus’ heartbeat before getting an abortion.
And by “allow,” we mean “force.”
House Bill 1077 was introduced by Rep. Kathy Rapp of Warren County in October and would further restrict a woman’s right to choose in Pennsylvania (assuming she’s able to find a women’s health clinic that hasn’t yet closed). It requires all women undergo certain procedures at least 24 hours prior to an abortion, with exceptions provided in cases of rape, incest, medical emergencies and for fetuses that are less than eight weeks along. The Pennsylvania Pro-Life Federation says the measure is meant to empower women, just like the scene in Juno that melted all our hearts.
When we first reported on this bill in October, Philly state Rep. Babette Josephs told us the 113 co-sponsors of this bill “assume—all of them—that women are either childish, frivolous, brainless, stupid or evil.” She also railed against the requirements it puts on Pennsylvania’s doctors, who, if they do not follow the bureaucracy’s rules, can face an injunction by the attorney general and have their facility shut down.
According to the legislation, the doctor performing the procedure is required to “Position the screen so that the patient is able to view the ultrasound test in its entirety, with a view of her unborn child, while that test is being conducted to determine gestational age,” although, “The patient is not required to view the screen.” Then, two prints of the ultrasound are made. The woman seeking the abortion and the doctor providing the procedure both get a copy. The doctor must tell the woman how old the fetus is and if the heartbeat is normal.
According to Life News, the legislation is required because ‘vulnerable’ women seeking an abortion aren’t able to think for themselves. I kid you not:
When a pregnant woman enters an abortion facility, she does so in a state of vulnerability. She is scared and often feels trapped by her circumstances. Abortion has been marketed to her by clinic workers or even forced upon her by a boyfriend or by her family and she has come to believe it is the only way out. In her state of stress and anxiety, making her aware of the information available to her can provide much-needed clarity. The decision she is about to make is irrevocable. She will live with the consequences for the rest of her life. For many women, abortion has done irreparable damage, leaving them to suffer physical and psychological problems.
Many post-abortive women say that if they had known all the facts, including information about the development of their unborn child, they would have made a different decision. We owe it to women to ensure they have all the facts.
When we talked to Rep. Josephs about the bill in the fall, she made the point that many of the bill’s 113 co-sponsors must have low opinions of their own constituents. “What I find profoundly insulting is that these men and women on this bill think their own voters, who they assume are smart enough to vote for them, can’t figure out what their own pregnancies are about and are too stupid…or evil to handle it themselves,” she said.
Similar bills have been passed in states across the country. HB 1077 would put Pennsylvania on par with Louisiana, North Carolina and Texas.
“This legislation will empower women by giving them a high-tech tool that will provide them with critical information about the development of the child in the womb,” said Maria Vitale Gallagher, legislative director for the Pennsylvania Pro-Life Federation. “House Bill 1077 represents a victory for women, and a victory for patient rights.”