New bill signed in Texas requires sonogram before abortion
Gov. Rick Perry of Texas led recently a ceremonial signing of a bill that will require women to have a sonogram before having an abortion.
In a room filled with supporters of the bill, Perry said that women will now have access to all the information they will need to make an informed decision whether or not to end their pregnancies, Star Telegram said.
Perry said, “Every life lost to abortion is a tragedy we all must work together to prevent. This important bill will ensure that every Texas woman seeking an abortion has all the facts about the life she is carrying, and understands the devastating impact of such a life-changing decision,” the Star Telegram reported.
Perry had designated the bill as an emergency item during the house session. The law will take effect on Sept. 1, and requires doctors to make available to women who plan to have an abortion the image of the fetus, with the sound of the fetal heartbeat.
Under the law, a woman may choose not to see or hear the sonogram. In such case, the doctor will describe the fetus’ size and condition of organs and limbs, Star Telegram said.
The woman will then have to wait for 24 hours before the abortion is performed. However, if she lives more than 100 miles from the abortion clinic, she will only have to wait for two hours, the Star Telegram reported.
Exemptions will be permitted in case of emergency, if the fetus has abnormalities, or if the pregnancy is the result of rape or incest, Star Telegram said.
During the ceremony Perry told supporters, “I’m very proud to say Texas is a state that respects and defends life,” according to The Houston Chronicle. Sen. Dan Patrick, R-Houston, said, “Standing for life is not a partisan issue. It’s a God issue.”
Meanwhile a pro-abortion group is preparing its own legal challenge. Bebe Anderson, counsel for the Center for Reproductive Rights in New York, told Star Telegram that her group plans to file a lawsuit in Texas that will challenge the law.
Anderson told Star Telegram, “One of the big problems is the way it forces women to hear or see information when they have chosen not to do that. It gets the government in between the doctor and the patient in a totally inappropriate way.”
Anderson also told the Star Telegram it “treats women as too immature and incompetent to make this decision themselves. It implies women don’t know the information they need.”
Information they deserve
However, Sen. Dan Patrick, R-Houston disagrees. He told Star Telegram, “Women are finally going to get the information they deserve before making a decision on an issue that can never be reversed. I believe at least one out of five women may decide to keep the baby or put it up for adoption. [This is] the beginning of the end for abortion.”
Kyleen Wright, president of Texans for Life Coalition told Star Telegram, “We are thrilled Texas women considering abortion finally have all the information every other surgical patient takes for granted. The window to the womb is forever open and there is no going back.”
Patrick told the crowd, “We had a 31-year-old nurse this year that testified that she aborted a child when she was in school, and if she had only seen the sonogram, she would be sitting in there with a 10- or 11-year-old son or daughter,” The Houston Chronicle reported.
Patrick continued, “The good news is – the good news is — through the blood of Jesus Christ he forgives and women who have aborted children need to know that message. I believe this can be the beginning of the end of 75,000 abortions we have every year in Texas,” according to The Houston Chronicle.