NC Anti-Abortion Measures Will Become Law, Despite Governor's Efforts to Stop Them

I'm sorry to bring you yet another piece of distressing news today, but this is important. Yesterday, the North Carolina House of Representatives overrode a veto by Democratic Gov. Beverly Perdue, paving the way for measures that will significantly roll back the abortion rights of women in the state.

Reuters has the details of the legislation:

Women seeking an abortion in North Carolina will have to wait 24 hours and be presented with an ultrasound image of the fetus under an informed consent law passed on Thursday....

North Carolina joins 25 other U.S. states that require pre-abortion counseling that goes beyond basic medical "informed consent," according to Elizabeth Nash, public policy associate with Guttmacher Institute in Washington.

It is the tenth state to include the additional requirement of an ultrasound, which has drawn legal challenges in several states, Nash said.

The North Carolina law will require that an ultrasound image be presented and the sound of the fetal heartbeat be offered, though a woman is free to look away and ignore an explanation and medical description of what is on the screen.

As the article notes, these are measures that are becoming all too common, as states around the country make getting an abortion -- something that is legal in this country, thanks to Roe v. Wade -- difficult, if not impossible, to obtain.

This must be a blow to Gov. Perdue, who did her best to stop this legislation from passing. Here's what she had to say upon vetoing the legislation last month (via Shakesville):

Physicians must be free to advise and treat their patients based on their medical knowledge and expertise and not have their advice overridden by elected officials seeking to impose their own ideological agenda on others.

According to the Guttmacher Institute, more than 33,100 abortions took place in North Carolina in 2008. So you can imagine the number of women this legislation will affect.

AlterNet / By Lauren Kelley

Posted at July 29, 2011, 7:05am

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