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Minnesota gov. vetoes bill requiring abortionists to offer ultrasounds to women

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SAINT PAUL, Minnesota, May 18, 2018 (LifeSiteNews) – Minnesota Gov. Mark Dayton has vetoed a bill that would have forced abortionists in the state to offer women the chance to view ultrasound images of their babies before going through with aborting them.

The legislation, which passed the state House 79-48 and the state Senate 37-30 earlier this month, requires abortionists that employ ultrasounds to “orally inform the patient of the opportunity to view or decline to view an active ultrasound image of the unborn child” prior to an abortion.

But Dayton, a member of the Minnesota Democratic–Farmer–Labor (DFL) Party (the state’s Democratic Party affiliate), vetoed the bill on Wednesday, the StarTribune reports.

In announcing his veto, Dayton claimed the requirement “interferes with the doctor-patient relationship, legislating the private conversations that occur about a legal medical procedure.” He also cited the Minnesota Medical Association and the Minnesota section of the American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists’ opposition to the bill.

"Once again Gov. Dayton has yielded to the extremes of the abortion industry, which actually lobbied against informed consent for women," Minnesota Citizens Concerned for Life (MCCL) Legislative Director Andrea Rau said in response to the news. "With this veto of the ultrasound bill, the governor has demonstrated profound disregard for the rights of Minnesota's women."

“This legislation should not be controversial—it was about basic informed consent for women," she added. Informed consent is extensively regulated without controversy in all other areas of medicine, and the American Medical Association calls informed consent “fundamental in both ethics and law.”

MCCL also pointed out that Dayton has vetoed many pro-life measures throughout his eight years as governor, including abortion facility licensure and bans on abortion at twenty weeks, taxpayer funding of abortion, performing abortions by telemedicine, human cloning, and taxpayer funding of human cloning.

Abortionists routinely use ultrasounds for determining the age of the baby they are aborting and for planning abortion procedures, but intensely oppose allowing the women who come to them to view the images for themselves. A Live Action investigation last year found that 65 out of 68 Planned Parenthood locations refused requests to perform ultrasounds for purposes of prenatal care.

This is because ultrasounds have, in the words of Life Issues Institute president Bradley Mattes, “flung open the window to the womb for all to peer in,” providing “undeniable evidence” of preborn humanity that has “turned many hearts and minds” to the pro-life cause. Tacitly admitting the point, left-wing publications such as The Atlantic have attacked ultrasounds for “Advanc[ing] the Idea that a Fetus is a Person.”

Evidence suggest that pro-lifers’ hopes and abortion supporters’ fears are well-founded.

Save the Storks, which provides free ultrasound services to pregnancy centers via its Stork Moblie Medical Units, says that four out of five women who enter one of their vehicles ultimately chooses life. A similar group, ICU Mobile, has said that its ultrasounds have convinced 56% of women who had already decided on abortion to change their mind, and 87% of those who were undecided to choose life. In addition, a 2011 study by Quinnipiac University’s Mark Gius concluded that “ultrasound laws had a very significant and negative effect on the abortion decision.”

Dayton, whose current term expires in January, is not seeking reelection, and Rau looks forward to the opportunity to replace him with a “state executive who will act to protect all of our citizens, including unborn children.”

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