New Abortion Ban Bills in Florida Legislature

We have received word from Kate Neilson that HB 1429 and SB 1890, the “Dismemberment Abortion” bills, are in opposition to our public policy priorities. The reason is that they limit a woman’s control of her reproductive life. They seek to ban the most common second-trimester procedure, properly called a dilation and evacuation or D&E, by making it a felony for a physician to “knowingly” perform one. I have read the bill and the staff analysis, and I find it very confusing (it’s OK if the fetus is killed first or if suction is involved) and very threatening to the provider. Doctors would have to choose a method based on the law and not on the best interests of the woman. I encourage you to read the staff analysis and the bill here. D&E abortion staff analysis

The fight to roll back reproductive choice is now in the phase of attempts to ban certain procedures, using emotional language and painful imagery. If enough procedures are banned and the legal risk of being an abortion provider is increased, their goals of taking the control of women’s own bodies away from them are achieved.

It is likely that if passed, this law would also be found unconstitutional. As noted in the article referenced below, eight states have had similar laws introduced; two are in force, one is permanently blocked by the courts, and the rest are in judicial review.

For those who wish to learn more, here’s a good article:

https://www.guttmacher.org/gpr/2017/02/de-abortion-bans-implications-banning-most-common-second-trimester-procedure

The House bill has been favorably reported out of two committees so far, with one to go. The Senate bill 1890 has not been heard in committee.

Here’s how the representatives voted:

Health Quality Subcommittee (1/24/18)

YES
Burton
Byrd
Donalds
Grant, J
Mariano
Massullo
Perez
Pigman
Stevenson

NO
Ascensio
Jones
Mercado
Newton
Plascencia
Silvers

Judiciary Committee (2/7/18)

Record Vote:
YES
Burgess
Byrd
Fitzenhagen
Gonzalez
Grall
Harrison
Metz
Moraitis
Perez
Plakon
Spano
Sprowls
Trumbull

NO
Alexander
Cortes, J
Diamond
Geller
Hager
Pritchett
Slosberg
Stafford

Author: Pat DeWitt

I am a retired institutional researcher, a musician and musicologist, and support AAUW as well as several environmental causes.

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