Eleven States Enter New Abortion Debate

Facts matter: Sign up for the free Mother Jones Daily newsletter. Support our nonprofit reporting. Subscribe to our print magazine.


President Obama thinks that “legislation to expand access to contraception [and] health information…[will] help reduce unintended pregnancies.” But this month pro-life legislators have taken a more underhanded approach.

Eleven states are currently considering bills that would require women to undergo an ultrasound before having an abortion. Sixteen states already have laws that require doctors to offer women the option to have an ultrasound. Oklahoma’s proposed law goes even farther, and would force women to view ultrasounds and require doctors to verbally describe the images. Many legislators say the efforts are not political, but rather about providing “information to a mother who is in a desperate situation,” says Senator Tony Fulton (R-NE), “information about what she’s about to choose; information about the reality inside her womb…”

Missouri’s proposed bill would not only require ultrasounds, but also make it a crime to coerce a woman into having an abortion; for example, by mental or physical abuse or job discrimination. South Carolina already has a pre-abortion ultrasound law, but a newly proposed law would make women wait twenty-four hours, after seeing the ultrasound, to deliberate before having an abortion.

In Wyoming, last week the state’s House Labor, Health and Social Services Committee shot down a proposed ultrasound bill in a 6-3 vote. But the debate is far from over; it remains to be seen whether Obama’s federal policies have any effect on this year’s group of ultrasound propositions.

THE END...

of our fiscal year is Thursday, June 30, and we have a much larger fundraising gap than we can easily manage with only days left to go.

Right now is no time to come up short: If you value the hard-hitting, democracy-protecting, justice-advancing journalism you get from Mother Jones, please help us keep charging as hard as we possibly can with a much-needed and much-appreciated donation today.

payment methods

THE END...

of our fiscal year is Thursday, June 30, and we have a much larger fundraising gap than we can easily manage with only days left to go.

Right now is no time to come up short: If you value the hard-hitting, democracy-protecting, justice-advancing journalism you get from Mother Jones, please help us keep charging as hard as we possibly can with a much-needed and much-appreciated donation today.

payment methods

We Recommend

Latest

Sign up for our free newsletter

Subscribe to the Mother Jones Daily to have our top stories delivered directly to your inbox.

Get our award-winning magazine

Save big on a full year of investigations, ideas, and insights.

Subscribe

Support our journalism

Help Mother Jones' reporters dig deep with a tax-deductible donation.

Donate