CAP’s latest assault on the constitutional right of privacy in health care decisions of Arizona women

Posted by AzBlueMeanie:

TalibanOn the opening day of the Arizona Legislature this year, the U.S. Supreme Court rejected Arizona's appeal from the 9th Circuit Court of Appeals striking down the legislature's 20-week abortion ban as unconstitutional. The source of this anti-choice bill, Mullah Cathi Herrod and her Christian Taliban at the Center for Arizona Policy (CAP), vowed to retaliate against Arizona women. Arizona cannot enforce abortion ban, Supreme Court rules:

Herrod signaled that her organization, which has been at the forefront of pushing lawmakers here to enact more restrictions on abortion, is not done yet.

"We are already taking the next steps to protect women and their pre-born children from the dangerous and deadly practices of the abortion industry," she said, promising details in the coming days.

One of CAP's foot soldiers in the Arizona Legislature, Rep. Debbie Lesko (R-Peoria), is the sponsor of HB 2284 (.pdf) which would, among other provisions, allow for the Christian Taliban to make unannounced "inspections" of abortion clinics to harass and intimidate abortion service providers and their patients. The Arizona Capitol Times (subscription required) reports, Anti-abortion bill would permit unannounced inspections of clinics:

A Peoria lawmaker has introduced an anti-abortion bill that would allow health inspectors to examine clinics unannounced. The bill also would make it a crime to circumvent the state’s parental consent law.

The bill, HB 2284, introduced Thursday by Rep. Debbie Lesko, also requires abortion clinics to report whether an infant survived a procedure and what steps doctors took to save it.

The possible penalty for breaking the law is up to six months in jail, a $2,500 fine or both.

Arizona already requires either notarized parental consent or a court order for a minor to get an abortion.

Under the proposed law, clinics would be required to say to say whether the fetus was born alive during or immediately after an attempted abortion and what life-saving steps were taken. Kredit said that requirement is inspired by the secret video shot by abortion foe Live Action showing a counselor at Family Planning Associates in Phoenix saying doctors would not resuscitate the fetus if it survived the procedure

The health inspector provision failed at the end of the 2013 session to get a vote on the House floor. Inspectors currently have to either act on a complaint or get an administrative search warrant to make an unannounced inspection.

Media Matters reported in June 2012 that Lila Rose's AZ Video Doesn't Change The Facts On The Rarity Of Sex-Selective Abortion:

Anti-choice activist Lila Rose's campaign to stoke fears that America faces an epidemic of sex-selection abortion sputtered once again, as Rose released another video that utterly failed to alter the fact that sex-selection abortion is not a growing problem.

Rose and her group, Live Action, released a video showing a woman posing as a patient at abortion clinics in Phoenix and Tucson, Arizona. As with Live Action's previous videos, the fake patients claim that they want to have an abortion because the fetus is female and discuss their options.

Live Action is trying to use these videos to distort the reality about sex-selective abortion in America — facts show that it is rare:

  • The absence of a gender imbalance in the U.S. indicates that sex selection is not happening on a large scale. As the Guttmacher Institute wrote, "the U.S. sex ratio at birth in 2005 stood at 105 boys to 100 girls, squarely within biologically normal parameters."
  • Most abortions are performed before gender is identifiable. The Centers for Disease Control reported that in 2008, 91.4 percent of abortions were performed before the 13th week of pregnancy. Robert Shmerling of Harvard Health Publications noted that gender identification by means of ultrasound, by far the most popular method, is usually only available by the 16th to 20th week. Although there are methods to detect gender earlier on in a pregnancy, "these procedures are usually performed to detect potential health problems such as Down's syndrome, spina bifida, or cystic fibrosis, not to find out a baby's gender."

This bill would open the door to more harassment and intimidation of abortion service providers and their patients by anti-choice zealots like Lila Rose and Live Action.

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