Following is a brief delineation of aspects of the testimonies on the House floor (see previous post) that promoted disinformation. This was especially harmful and confusing to the youth who were guests in the House during these proceedings. KRLA's comment on each testimony is in red. (Some comments pertain to legislation passed in previous years; some are paraphrased.) Please share this article!
1. Testimony of Tamara, read by Mary Lou Marzian:
Decreasing women’s access to abortion will likely increase negative health outcomes and complications including maternal and infant mortality … Waiting periods are hurtful … Abortion is a core component of social and economic equality and crucial to a woman’s dignity and privacy needs.
How did these talking points enter the common discourse on abortion rights? Through ACOG and similar organizations that are medical associations that have become political in their mission. See the amicus brief referenced in this post.
2. Testimony of ObGyn Dr. Christine Cook, read by Lisa Willner:
This bill is functionally a complete ban on abortion … a gross interference in the care of patients … I have taken care of patients who could die, on babies who could never survive outside the womb … where termination must be chosen for babies with severe anomalies… for women who cannot afford another child … It is the clear consensus of ACOG (and others) that it interferes with physician-patient relationship … It is a violation of patients’ constitutional rights.
In sponsoring HB67 Rep. Fischer has explained that neither the U.S. nor the Ky. Constitution protects a right to abortion. The Roe v. Wade case evidenced ‘raw judicial power’ in its decision, and because of the aggressive nature of pro-choice advocates, some states have been lobbied to find this supposed ‘right’ to an abortion in their state constitutions. This could happen here. All HB67 does is to allow our General Assembly to regulate abortion. It can provide for exceptions in statutory laws, as is currently done. It prevents the courts from becoming involved such that our pro-life laws are overturned in the courts irrespective of the pro-life sentiment of voters in Ky.
In some of Dr. Cook’s examples, she confuses elective abortion with therapeutic abortion. If a woman could die, current law and HB67, with HB48 that passed last year, permit abortion. Current law effectively permits elective abortion up to 22 weeks.
3. Testimony of Ashley, read by Jeffery Donohue:
At 20 years of age while still living at home, experienced ectopic pregnancy… feared my father would throw me out and that an emergency room would notify him… went to clinic and would have died without an abortion— had I been subjected to a waiting period I would have died.
There is never any waiting period for a medical emergency, whether in a hospital or clinic.
4. Testimony of Katy, read by Josie Raymond (while holding her baby girl):
At 12 weeks pregnancy an ultrasound showed my baby was abnormal and its heart would stop in the coming weeks… at the time the Ky Legislature was debating D&E abortion… the bill offered no exception to people like me… At 18 weeks my baby’s heart stopped and I chose to deliver it, but if [HB454] had been passed, I could not have chosen a D&E by law… .
The Dismemberment Abortion law (currently under litigation - not in effect) does not prevent D&E abortion; it only legislates that the fetus must be humanely treated, ensuring its demise through a painless injection before it is dismembered. Please also listen to Rep. Prunty’s testimony (at about 29 min.) that speaks to the issue of babies who die and must be delivered posthumously.
5. Testimony of Danielle, read by Joni Jenkins:
Abortion access is sacred… As a rape victim the barriers in Kentucky to abortion caused hardship for me… had to travel three hours from W. Ky. to Louisville… Law allows no insurance coverage… Every woman should have the healthcare coverage they need… This bill has no exceptions.
‘Life of the mother’ is the current exception for abortions performed in public hospitals. This recognizes that the pre-born baby has a right to life no matter how it was conceived. Insurance plans have varying coverages.
6. Testimony of Jackie McGranahan, ACLU of Ky., read by Reginald Meeks:
HB67 is especially bad for poor and low income women… (other similar points to previous testimonies).