Recon: Abortion and Reproductive Rights in the Crosshairs

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  • In May, President Bush held a photo-op with babies born from embryos left over from fertility treatments. “They’re called ‘snowflakes,'” he said, “indicating there’s an alternative to the destruction of life.”
  • In the first half of 2005, 48 state bills were signed into law restricting abortion rights, ranging from official recognition of the “personhood” of the fetus to outright bans on abortion. .Twenty-nine such bills were passed in 2004.
  • Twenty states have considered laws that would allow pharmacists to refuse to provide birth control.
  • Focus on the Family’s “Option Ultrasound” is providing millions of dollars of equipment to “crisis pregnancy centers” — which try to dissuade women from getting abortions.
  • The FDA has delayed approving over-the-counter status for Plan B, the “morning-after pill” now legal without a prescription in 34 countries.
  • The Wisconsin Assembly approved a ban of the morning-after pill on state college campuses.
  • A House bill would make it a federal crime to take a teen across state lines to get an abortion if her home state is one of 34 that require parental notification.
  • Another bill before Congress would require doctors to tell women who are more than 20 weeks pregnant that “there is substantial evidence that the process of being killed in an abortion will cause the unborn child pain.”
  • A 19-year-old Texan was sentenced to life in prison for stepping on his girlfriend’s abdomen to help her terminate her pregnancy. The 17-year-old woman, who was five months’ pregnant, wasn’t charged because the law recognized her rights as “the mother of the unborn child.”

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This is a big one for us. So, as we ask you to consider supporting our team's journalism, we thought we'd slow down and check in about where Mother Jones is and where we're going after the chaotic last several years. This comparatively slow moment is also an urgent one for Mother Jones: You can read more in "Slow News Is Good News," and if you're able to, please support our team's hard-hitting journalism and help us reach our big $350,000 goal with a donation today.

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