Utah introduces sex-selective abortion ban, Ohio Senate stops a Heartbeat, and more
WASHINGTON, D.C., December 4, 2012, (LifeSiteNews.com) – With the presidency in hostile hands for another four years and lacking a veto-proof majority in Congress, pro-life legislation continues to move forward in the states. Already this legislative year bills have been introduced to ban sex-selective abortions, while more bills have been unveiled – and already Ohio has closed off consideration of a Heartbeat bill that would save the smallest babies.
State Sen. Margaret Dayton, R-Orem, has introduced the “Gender Selection Prohibition” Act, a sex-selective abortion ban. Planned Parenthood of Utah Executive Director Karrie Galloway says there is no problem, so the state needs no new law. A similar bill, supported by Congressman Trent Franks, failed to pass the U.S. House last year. Dayton says she may introduce a bill barring abortion on the basis of race, as did Franks.
Although the state House passed the Heartbeat bill months ago, Senate President Tom Niehaus said the bill will see no action. Niehaus, whose career will end due to term limits in just weeks, also refused to advance a bill that would defund Planned Parenthood. “We have seen the most pro-life legislature in my memory,” he said, but opponents need to look “at the entirety of work done” by the nation’s largest abortion provider.
The state of Arizona has appealed a judge’s ruling that it cannot implement a bill barring state funding from going to any entity that performs abortions. The primary recipient, Planned Parenthood, requires all its affiliates to have at least one location that performs abortions. It receives nearly half of its funding from U.S. taxpayers. Jim Sedlak of the American Life League estimates it receives another 25 percent from abortion. If the appeal goes through, the case would be heard by the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals.
Arizona is also one of a growing number of states to post an informed consent website. The state’s website carries representative images of unborn children at each two weeks of development. It notes post-abortive “feelings may include guilt, sadness, or emptiness” but acknowledges, “Some women feel relief.” State Health Director Will Humble told local media he was not promoting any political agenda; “My job is to carry out the laws that lawmakers in Arizona have passed,” he said.
The pro-life agenda sees an opening in Arkansas, where Republicans hold both the state House and Senate for the first time since Reconstruction. Ten bills stalled last year. Top priorities for 2013 include a fetal pain bill, barring the state health care exchange from covering abortions, and a possible telemed abortion ban. Arkansas Right to Life plans to push for the measures at the beginning of the legislative session next January 14.
Wisconsin Right to Life plans a similarly active agenda. The group hopes to promote a fetal pain law that would limit abortion to the first 20 weeks of pregnancy. WRTL also hopes to stamp out sex-selective abortion and to end taxpayer funding of state workers’ abortions. Rep. Joel Kleefisch, R-Oconomowoc and Sen. Glenn Grothman, R-West Bend, have announced their willingness to act.
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A Frankenmuth high school principal made statewide headlines when he enforced a dress code against tights or other revealing outfits. “There’s no place for sexy at school,” he said. The town is known for its year long Christmas shopping, a regional tourist attraction.