The NC House Judiciary Subcommittee B passed HB 854 Abortion - Woman's Right to Know Act this morning. The vote was 9 - 5 along party lines with all the Democrats opposing the bill. The bill, which would better be called the "Women Know Nothing Act" allows politicians to interfere directly with the doctor - patient relationship by requiring two pages worth of government scripted "counseling" by doctors before a woman may access the safe and constitutionally protected medical procedure of abortion. In addition, the bill undermines the spirit of Roe v. Wade by requiring a 24 hour waiting period, an ultrasound, that the doctor describe the ultrasound, and creation of biased and unnecessary counseling before a woman may terminate her pregnancy. The bill is now expected to be voted on by the full House early next week. Call your House Representative and ask him or her to oppose this bill which extends the reach of the government into the doctor's office.
In 1973, the US Supreme Court decided Roe v. Wade, acknowledging that whether or not to carry a pregnancy to term was ultimately the pregnant woman's decision and protecting women's access to abortion. In his concurrence in Roe v. Wade, Justice Potter Stewart, citing several earlier Supreme Court cases, wrote, "We recognized ‘the right of the individual, married or single, to be free from unwarranted governmental intrusion into matters so fundamentally affecting a person as the decision whether to bear or beget a child.’ That right necessarily includes the right of a woman to decide whether or not to terminate her pregnancy."
HB 854 restricts access to abortion well beyond access to any other health care and interferes in this medical decision making in a way no other procedure is interfered with. The bill places substantial burdens on a woman already in a difficult situation and second guesses decisions that ought to be made by the woman and her doctor. The Government and politicians ought not to be mandating one size fits all counseling and ought to leave the practice of medicine to doctors, nurses, and other qualified health care professionals.
Representatives Bordsen, Bryant, Glazier, Haire, and Michaux all opposed the bill. Call your Representative and ask him or her to do the same.