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Michigan Anti-Abortion Super Bill Is Back

Michigan Anti-Abortion Super Bill Is Back

The Michigan Senate is preparing to vote on HB 5711, the omnibus anti-abortion bill that if passed would place the state on par with Arizona for states with the most aggressive abortion restrictions.

Last time Michigan considered the bill debate was so contentious that Republicans barred two female Democratic House members from speaking on the floor after they used offensive words like “vagina” and “vasectomy.” And as Robin Marty reports, it was widely believed that the bill was dead until at least September, but now it could come up for vote as early as Wednesday.

The bill’s worst provisions include a ban on abortion after 20 weeks gestation, even in the cases of rape and incest. The bill also makes it a crime for anyone to “coerce” a woman into having an abortion and requires doctors give patients a questionnaire to help determine if the woman had been coerced before they can legally perform the procedure. Those same doctors are also forced to cover at least $1 million in liability insurance if they perform five or more abortions each month or have been subject to two or more civil suits in the past seven years.

Because it’s an omnibus bill HB 5711 is also riddled with TRAP regulations including a provision that requires any clinic that provides six or more abortions in a month or which which advertises abortion services be licensed as a “freestanding surgical outpatient facility” which means that even if a clinic doesn’t offer surgical abortions it would be required to have a full surgical suite on site.

The rush to pass the bill is likely tied to the fact that the original public uproar over the legislation has subsided. Lawmakers also will want to pass the bill before it is too close to the November election where additional scrutiny would likely grind passage to a halt. That means we have this small window to help the women of Michigan defeat this legislation that would force them to continue terminal pregnancies and drive doctors out of business.

Related Stories:

Michigan Anti-Abortion Bill Barrels Toward Thursday Vote

Michigan Anti-Abortion Bill Among The Worst This Year

MI GOP: ‘Vagina’ Offensive To Say, Necessary To Regulate

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Photo from AnyaLogic via flickr.

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86 comments

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8:25PM PDT on Sep 4, 2012

I hate to spend my life refighting the old battles, but we must. A woman's right to choose the course of her life is a fundamental right.

1:03PM PDT on Aug 30, 2012

It's not really up to YOU to decide how to balance the needs of a separate individual human PERSON and an her eggs, unless it's YOUR body and YOUR eggs.

12:21PM PDT on Aug 30, 2012

Heather, I have not forgotten the woman and I am trying to do my best to balance the needs of both in this most delicate and difficult of situations.

9:46AM PDT on Aug 30, 2012

James, if a fertalized egg doesn't implant it's not a pregnancy so therefore an ABORTION, which is the termination of PREGNANCY, did not happen!!!

Yes, we definately should err on the side of caution...on the side of the WOMAN who is unequivocally a separate individual unique PERSON with human DNA who even looks like a PERSON. Did you forget her??

1:24PM PDT on Aug 27, 2012

Tim (cont)…. supporting pregnancy centers.)

1:22PM PDT on Aug 27, 2012

Tim, if we are not sure, wouldn't it be wiser to err on the side of caution?

As for my own beliefs, which coincide with the Church's teaching (which I would hope NEVER to impose on anyone (believe it or not)... though I admit to finding them beautiful and wishing to share them) - according to the Church the body is not a mere vessel for the spirit. The Church rejects this dualistic notion. They are united. And the body is sacred as well and must be held so (e.g. killing and maiming are crimes). Though, acc. to Catholic teaching, the mortal bodies we have now will die and our souls be separated from them at death, in the final judgment the soul will be reunited with its glorified body. We are human beings, not angels (which are pure spirit). We have bodies and will always have them. The key to this understanding is that a) Creation is "good"; and b) the fact that God took on flesh at the Incarnation, thus making it holy (again), even divinized.

But again I come back to the thought - if in doubt, opt for caution. And actually, what we have been discussing here is science, biology, which seems like it would be a good, objective arbiter in the matter.

What I would hope for would not be a return to the back alley but an awakening of a civilization of love where all life would be held precious and the need for or even the thought of abortion would be gone. Call me an idealist, but it is our ideals that keep us alive. (One step in that direction might be suppor

12:49PM PDT on Aug 27, 2012

I've always been told - coming from the view point of many religions and spiritualists - that the body is a vessel for the spirit. DNA is just a building block for making that vessel [body], so the real argument here is when do soul and body become one? There clearly is no answer that not all people can agree on. Some religions and spiritualists believe it's on the day of birth, while others believe it's at conception. Since nobody can prove it or show any facts to back this up, then the battle of abortion will always be at a stalemate.

Therefore, the abortion process should be legal for all women because it is the safe thing to do for women. Taking us back to the back-ally abortions is certainly not compromise, nor is it any compassion for women's rights. Overall, the panel of men, whether governments or religion, should have no business deciding and dictating what rights women get to have when it comes to pregnancy. Just because you think your way is right does not mean you get to make everyone else do it or abide by it.

12:29PM PDT on Aug 27, 2012

Heather, That's true. It would be a miscarriage or an involuntary abortion of the pregnancy. Unless you're saying that something was done to prevent implantation. Then that would be considered abortion. I guess you're asking if what is aborted - voluntarily or involuntarily - is a person. Again, I would say that the reason to think it is, is the presence of DNA and the fact that the developmental process has begun. Of course it looks nothing like a person, but I don't think one can judge a life by the eye. (I want to make clear that I am not judging anyone here and would like to say that the God of Love can forgive ANYTHING.)

12:13PM PDT on Aug 27, 2012

If a fertalized egg does not implant into a uturus there will be no heartbeat, brain waves, or even a body. It will just flow out of a woman's body with the rest of her menstrual flow.

11:28AM PDT on Aug 27, 2012

Heather, I do not know exactly what point in the developmental process you are talking about. But again, at the moment of conception/fertilization the DNA of a particular person is present; after about three weeks a heartbeat can be detected; after about 40 days brain waves.. The body of the fetus gradually develops, cell division beginning immediately upon conception and then gradual growth occurring. At four or five weeks you can clearly see a head, arms and legs (starting as little stumps, looking kind of like a tadpole). By 10-12 weeks ALL the body parts are present - again, down to the fingerprints. I'm not sure where the word games are in this. Sometimes it seems people think there is just a blob of blood and tissue until the baby comes out from the womb whole… Just trying to communicate more factual information on fetal development.

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