A bill is about to go to the House Judiciary Committee that would set new requirements for women undergoing abortions.
It would essentially allow them to have access to ultrasounds before any abortion procedure is determined.
“This bill would allow a woman to view the ultrasound and have the person who may perform the abortion describe to the woman what she is seeing on the ultrasound,” said state Rep. Karen MacBeth, D-Cumberland.
MacBeth, the bill’s sponsor, said the legislation is about information even though she acknowledges how some can see it as being anti-abortion.
“Pro-life is in favor of this bill. However, I see this as a pro-information bill. I believe there’s people that are pro-choice that believe a woman should have the right to all the information possible,” MacBeth said.
MacBeth explained why she thinks the bill should become law.
“I think it ensures that the woman gets all the information to make a decision that’s going to affect her for the rest of her life,” MacBeth said.
Planned Parenthood offered its opinion in a statement.
“Planned Parenthood opposes mandatory ultrasound bills and all others that judge and demean women seeking reproductive health care. We have great respect for the private and personal decisions a woman makes with her doctor and her family regarding her personal health care,” Planned Parenthood said.
According to the legislation, there is no specific language that formally requires a woman to view the ultrasound. But if a physician violates a provision of the chapter, that doctor could face six-figure fines.
“My hope is that it does come to the House floor for a vote,” MacBeth said.