Last week, thousands of women protested and ultimately ran Virginia’s state-sanctioned rape train off the rails. It’s time to do the same in Alabama. Call or email Governor Bentley and ask him to veto it. Sign this petition.
Alabama Governor Bentley claimed yesterday that he just learned about the state-sanctioned rape bill that is quickly moving through the Alabama legislature:
Yesterday Governor Bentley (who, unlike SB12′s “author,” has a medical degree) said he had just heard about this bill. He declined to take a position on SB12. Call or email him and ask him to veto it.
A similar bill was on the fast track in Virginia, but has now come off the rails. How did they do it in Virginia? A few people understood what this bill really required, they communicated that knowledge very effectively, including pictures and blunt language, to members of the legislature and to the media. The bill and its supporters were widely ridiculed. Then the public began to understand. Then 1000 women silently lined the path used by Virginia legislators on the way to and from the chamber where they were voting away womens’ rights. The ultrasound requirement is not completely dead in Virginia (and certainly not in Alabama) but conservatives have definitely been burned.
Meanwhile, the proponent of the bill, Senator Greg Reed owns a company that sells the type of equipment that the bill would require, but doesn’t see a conflict of interest because of course he doesn’t:
The chairman of the Alabama Senate Health Committee said he doesn’t see a conflict of interest between his support for a bill that would require physicians to perform ultrasounds on women seeking abortions and his company, which sells the type of equipment the bill would require.
Sen. Greg Reed, R-Jasper, voted to move Senate Bill 12 out of committee last week because he said it’s a good bill that would help “a mother to understand that a live baby is inside her body.”
But there’s no chance Preferred Medical Systems, where Reed is vice president, would benefit, he said. It is the company’s policy not to do business with abortion providers, Reed said.
“I do not sell ultrasound equipment in my business to clinics that are abortion clinics,” he said recently. According to campaign information, Preferred Medical Systems sells diagnostic medical equipment in five states.
The bill from Clay Scofield, R-Guntersville, passed out of committee with a vote of 4-to-1 last week. Sen. Linda Coleman, D-Birmingham, voted against it.
The bill calls for the ultrasounds to be done either vaginally or with an abdominal scan, whichever would display the embryo or fetus more clearly. The doctor also would be required to describe the images to the woman.
Scofield said he hopes that, if signed into law, his bill will stop some abortions. Though the bill states a woman can look away from the ultrasound image, Scofield wants her to see it.
“So she sees that this is not just a clump of cells as she is told,” he said. “She will see the shape of the infant. And hopefully, she will choose to keep the child.”
The procedure would not be required in the case of a woman seeking an abortion to save her own life. But the bill doesn’t allow victims of sexual assault to opt out of the ultrasound.
Physicians who don’t perform the required ultrasound could be convicted of a Class C felony, which is punishable with between two and 20 years in prison. The bill also says the doctor could be sued by the unborn child’s father or grandparents.
Because one thing a woman who has chosen to abort a pregnancy doesn’t realize is that she’s actually pregnant. Because women are stupid, you see.
Just say no to inner-vaginal Republicans.
[via Left in Alabama]
[cross-posted at Balloon Juice]