UPDATE, 3:40: Governor McDonnell has released a statement regarding the bill, posted after the jump.
Virginia’s Republican Governor Robert McDonnell has come to his senses: he is dropping his support for a scary-ass bill requiring women seeking an abortion to first have a medically unnecessary “transvaginal ultrasound,” aka to be vaginally penetrated with a speculum and ultrasound probe. Keep reading »
We’ve long been following the WTF-ery of the “Susan B. Anthony and Frederick Douglass Prenantal Nondiscrimination Act,” which will criminalize abortions based on race or gender of the fetus. The anti-abortion supporter of the bill, Rep. Trent Franks, a Republican, insisted that America had to ban such abortions and threaten abortion providers with punishment for performing them, despite the fact sex- and gender-selective abortions are scarcely a problem in this country. And surely you noticed the nods to Anthony, a suffragette whom abortion opponents mistakenly paint as anti-abortion, and Douglass, a civil rights activist, as coded messages to conservative women and blacks?
That bill, which is now just called PreNDA, passed out of a committee last week and is headed to the House. But an eagle-eyed Jezebel reader has noticed in the fine print of the bill wording that would allow men and/or the woman’s parents to stop her from having an abortion. Keep reading »
Last night on “The Daily Show,” Jon Stewart was freaking hilarious in his coverage of last week’s anti-birth control sausagefest in Congress, in which a panel of all dudes tried to argue against President Obama’s health care reform compromise. Did you know these men mentioned “spiritual rape,” whatever that is, and Josef Stalin? When you have to invoke Stalin (or Hitler, or Mussolini, although let’s be honest, no one invokes Mussolini) into an argument to get people on board, you know you’re reaching. [The Daily Show]
One of the scariest anti-abortion bills in the U.S. right now is Virgina’s “mandatory ultrasound” bill, which requires a woman seeking an abortion to be vaginally penetrated with a speculum and ultrasound probe. The doctor operating the transvaginal ultrasound will then reflect that image onscreen; women will be forced to undergo this procedure to have an abortion even if they don’t want it. There is absolutely no medical reason to do a transvaginal ultrasound before an abortion, the bill doesn’t provide any exceptions for victims of rape or incest, and opponents of the bill have pointed out that it is, oh, you know, mandating doctors to sexual assault their patients.
Nevertheless, that scary bill passed Virginia’s House of Delegates last week. Now one politician, Delegate David Englin, a Democrat, is trying to draw attention to the fact that if abortion providers are required to probe women with transvaginal ultrasounds against their will, ultimately these doctors will be punishable under VA’s “object sexual penetration statute.” Keep reading »
The only good part about Republican politicians and their “Occupy Your Uterus” campaign is that it’s terrific fodder for political cartoonists. Case in point: cartoonist Matt Bors (who draws for places like the LA Times and the Village Voice) has doodled a bunch of pro-choice cartoons that actually made me chuckle about the day when us unwed wenches will have our hymens checked by the village wizard. Ugh, you’re the worst, Rick Santorum. [MattBors.com]
All abortions would be classified as feticides, a class A felony punishable by life imprisonment without chance for parole, under a new bill introduced on Wednesday by Iowa State Representative Kim Pearson, a Tea Party Republican. Pearson’s bill states:
Any person who intentionally terminates a human pregnancy, with the knowledge and consent of the pregnant person, where death of the fetus results, commits feticide. Feticide is a class A felony.
Under the bill, doctors who perform abortions could spend life in prison and doctors who attempt to perform an abortion (but don’t go through with it, for some unclear reason) would be charged with the class B felony of 25 years in prison. Keep reading »
Virginia politicians advanced two extreme and extremely disturbing anti-abortion bills yesterday — Valentine’s Day, for God’s sake! One is a so-called “fetal personhood” amendment, which would criminalize all abortions by declaring that a fertilized egg is a person.
The state’s Republican-controlled House of Delegates overwhelmingly passed the “fetal personhood” bill, which now heads to the state Senate. If the bill passes the state Senate and is signed into law by Republican Governor Bob McDonnell, it would be the most sweeping criminalization of abortion in the United States. Keep reading »
Chelsea Handler has never hidden the fact she became pregnant at age 16 and had an abortion. But this is the first I’ve heard her describe the circumstances in more detail, like how it was her parents who encouraged her against becoming a teen mom. “They were, like, you’re getting an abortion,” Chelsea told Rosie O’Donnell on “The Rosie Show.” “I was trying to argue with them and they said, ‘you don’t understand, you’re throwing your entire life away, you’re not having a child right now, this is not what our family is about. You’re supposed to create a life for yourself. You’re supposed to enjoy your life and create a life for yourself. You’re not supposed to be raising a child and we’re certainly not going to raise it for you.’” Keep reading »