Abortion Bill 732 Is Bad Medicine

By Tara Murtha
Add Comment Add Comment | Comments: 21 | Posted Oct. 26, 2011

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Pull the curtains back a little more from this carefully orchestrated bit of political theater and it’s easy to see that Baker isn’t working for women; he’s working for the Christian right. He just thinks we’re too dumb to realize it.

Baker didn’t respond to PW’s request for comment except to write, “I believe we are close to having an agreement by the Chambers and the Governor soon.”

Expanded hallways and new elevators at abortion clinics will not improve the health of women in Pennsylvania. Nor will legislators conjuring images of murdered babies and women distract from the fact that the Gosnell tragedy happened because of a failure of government, not a failure of law.

Abortion clinics in Pennsylvania are already heavily regulated. Those with labs on site—most do—must be inspected under the federal Clinical Laboratories Improvement Amendments. Abortion providers performing 100 or more procedures a year must be registered with Patient Safety Authority and comply with MCARE Act, which requires inspections. Abortions in Pennsylvania can only be performed by licensed physicians, regulated by the state’s Board of Medicine.

On top of that, there are the additional regulations Corbett implemented right after the grand jury report on Gosnell was released.

Yet, if SB 732 passes both chambers, Corbett is expected to sign the bill into law. Then, the relatively few clinics left in Pennsylvania (only 10 of our 67 counties currently have an abortion provider, according to the DoH) will likely close.

Experts are estimating if that happens, the cost of an early stage abortion will jump from approximately $350 to more than $1,000.

Calling SB 732 a “back-door ban” on abortion is no exaggeration. While middle-class women will be able to travel as far and pay as much as necessary to obtain an abortion, as usual, poor women will be disproportionately affected by the lopsided health care.

According to the grand jury report, Gosnell saw mostly poor patients from his neighborhood. Given the dire conditions of the clinic, presumably, these women didn’t know where else to go.

Baker and proponents of SB 732 are exploiting murder and the physical suffering of poor women in order to float a law that will make it harder for them to find access to safe abortion and health-care services.

While not everyone may agree on the morality of abortion—a legal, regulated medical procedure—we can all agree that the disingenuousness of this rhetoric is low and that targeting poor women is even lower. With a hat tip to Steve Lopez, it’s frightening to think about just how shameless this state can get.

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Comments 1 - 21 of 21
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1. Big Larry said... on Oct 26, 2011 at 03:12PM

“"Meanwhile, abortion is already a remarkably safe procedure"

safely terminating a baby is a bit ironic.”

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2. dpezz said... on Oct 26, 2011 at 03:32PM

“"Ironic"??? Please keep comments like that to yourself unless you can speak from some type of experience. If your sister, wife, mother, was raped and became pregnant, should she be forced to have that baby? Whether you approve or not, the procedure still needs to be safe.

This is a serious step backward and does nothing to protect current women's right.”

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3. Kristen said... on Oct 27, 2011 at 01:10AM

“This is disturbing to me, but I'm not surprised that white, upperclass, cisgender, (supposedly) heterosexual males would attempt to once again oppress all, and especially lower class, women. Elevators and an RN in the room while I'm getting an annual exam do not improve my health in any shape or form.

Our legislators need to start listening to constituents instead of continuing to ignore our demands and supporting ONE religious (and mostly non-scientificly based) opinion on social issues. Want to improve the health of women? Give us affordable access to quality healthcare. Stop restricting my rights to my body.”

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4. Maria said... on Oct 27, 2011 at 08:00AM

“I do not know of an industry, other than the abortion industry, which could get away with fighting basic safety standards. The health and safety of women in Pennsylvania require the passage of SB 732.”

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5. gale routh said... on Oct 27, 2011 at 08:46AM

“this is science:
fetus ( NOT A BABY, THEY ARE BORN...GOOGLE THE HUMAN DEVELOPMENT CHART) is a parasite because the classification of the biological relationship that is based on the behavior of one organism (the fetus) and how it relates to the woman's body:

as a zygote, it invaded the woman's uterus using its Trophoblast cells and hijacked her immune system by using Neurokinin B---so her body won't KILL it, and stole her nutrients to survive and causes her harm or potential DEATH!


"it is also possible for a symbiotic relationship to exist between two organisms of the same species."
http://www.answers.com/topic/symbiosis---–Gale's Science of Everyday Things:

"an animal or plant that lives in or on another (the host) from which it obtains nourishment. The host does not benefit from the association and is often harmed by it"

if a man can kill his tapeworm at anytime, so should a woman abort her unwanted human parasitic fetus at anytime, too.”

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6. Bob said... on Oct 27, 2011 at 09:46AM

“@ Gale Routh...
pretty much the most vile explanation of a fetus (human, if you let it come to term) I have ever heard. I guess someone as callous as you spouting your skewed, biased view of science proves the hatred towards life of the liberal mindset. So, according to your definition of parasite, I could use the same justification for terminating the homeless, those on welfare, etc...because they live off of the welfare my taxes provide for them, in essence, hurting my financial well-being.....except there is one difference. A fetus didn't have the choice the mother (usually) has in performing unprotected sex. A large percentage of those on welfare have a choice to make something of themselves, yet choose to stay on as a recipient....everything about your rant is based on a false sense of bloated intellect and "better than thou" mindset.”

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7. Bob said... on Oct 27, 2011 at 10:04AM

I am not for the murder of the homeless and those on welfare, as I justified by using your "SCIENCE".
...Also, I love your fool-proof sources...wikipedia and answers.com. Classic.

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8. Jen said... on Oct 27, 2011 at 11:42AM

“Not one legislator can articulate how more space in an operating room or in the hallways actually makes a patient safer. Excellent article - thank you for pointing out how blatantly anti-abortion and anti-women Matt Baker's agenda is.”

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9. Russ said... on Oct 27, 2011 at 01:51PM

“Having an emergency room for this procedure is NOT a basic safety standard. Getting your wisdom teeth pulled is 100 times more dangerous than getting an abortion because they use anesthesia, yet I don't see everyone up in arms that your dentist has to be emergency room ready. Why aren't you protecting women from going to the dentist? Because it's ludicrous, just like this bill.”

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10. Anonymous said... on Oct 27, 2011 at 11:17PM

“In the case of abortionist, Kermit Gosnell whose clinic was in filthy conditions and who was convicted of murder...

"In the mid-1990s, the administration of Pennsylvania governor Tom Ridge, a pro-choice Republican, ended regular inspections of abortion clinics--a policy that continued until just last year.

According to the grand jury report [2][PDF] released this week by Philadelphia prosecutors, Pennsylvania health officials deliberately chose not to enforce laws to ensure that abortion clinics provide the same level of care as other medical service providers.

Warnings--from patients and their attorneys, a doctor at a Philadelphia hospital, women's health groups, pro-choice groups, and even an employee of the Philadelphia Department of Public Health--failed to prompt state and local authorities to investigate or take action against the clinic."


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11. Anonymous said... on Oct 27, 2011 at 11:19PM

“The grand jury report said that one look at the place would have detected the problems, but the Pennsylvania Department of Health hadn't inspected the place since 1993. Here's the grand jury report, in surprisingly strong language:

"The Pennsylvania Department of Health abruptly decided, for political reasons, to stop inspecting abortion clinics at all. The politics in question were not anti-abortion, but pro. With the change of administration from Governor Casey to Governor Ridge, officials concluded that inspections would be "putting a barrier up to women" seeking abortions."

That is what this article is claiming. It goes on....

"Even nail salons in Pennsylvania are monitored more closely for client safety," the report states. "Without regular inspections, providers like Gosnell continue to operate; unlawful and dangerous third-trimester abortions go undetected; and many women, especially poor women, suffer."

From the same article above.”

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12. Anonymous said... on Oct 27, 2011 at 11:28PM

“"Abortion clinics in Pennsylvania are already heavily regulated. Those with labs on site—most do—must be inspected under the federal Clinical Laboratories Improvement Amendments"

In light of what was found by the grand jury in the Gosnell case (in Pennsylvainia), this article's above statement is inaccurate. Inspections depended on who was in the administration. A law would prevent this inconsistency and by requiring what specifically would have to be done to ensure the safety of women.

This is not about pro-choice or pro-life. It's about women's health in a sanitary, safe environment surrounded by trained professionals who are inspected regularly (like nail clinics--as the grand jury points were more regulated). Shame on this author for putting politics above women's health and safety!”

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13. Tara Murtha said... on Oct 28, 2011 at 09:46AM

“To clarify:

"Pennsylvania health officials deliberately chose not to enforce laws..."

Yes. Laws existed, yet government failed to enforce them. Gosnell was a result of a failure of government to enforce laws/regulations, not a lack of laws/regulations.

After the grand jury report was released, Corbett tightened existing regulations and ordered regular, surprise inspections. No one is against this.

Bill 732 isn't about inspections. It focuses on expensive architectural renovations.

If passed as is, most if not all clinics in PA will close. That would be bad for women's health and safety, particularly poor women.

The decision not to inspect put politics above women's health. So does Bill 732.

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14. Peter North said... on Oct 29, 2011 at 11:56AM

“Murtha, you liberal hack! What does society gain from destroying its future leaders? Nitwit.”

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15. peter north said... on Oct 29, 2011 at 07:39PM

“Poor women need to stop fucking.”

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16. Free American Ciizen said... on Nov 2, 2011 at 05:26AM

“The bumper-sticker mentality of Christian supremacists ignores their own history. They are not "pro-life", as thousands of years of Christian atrocities, forced conversions, torture, genocide, slavery, the Crusades, the Inquisition, hundeds of years of witch-burning, the Holocaust and beyond will attest. This is nothing more than Christian Sharia law being legislated into a secular republic.

To all you "government out of my life" fundamentalist right-wingers: we want you our of our lives. America's freedom started with freedom from delusional religious absolutists like you.”

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17. rogelio said... on Nov 12, 2011 at 01:58AM

“i am a nurse that is adamantly pro-life.

the size of a janitor closet affects the safety of a woman undergoing an abortion HOW?

let's cut the BS.”

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18. Anonymous said... on Dec 14, 2011 at 10:31AM

“I work in the GYN/OBGYN industry and I believe in this bill simply because so much could go wrong, why not have the most qualified medical personnel on staff? As of 2004, the majority of abortions are done by 28 year old women who have never been married, are African American, at 13 weeks of gestation. 74% of abortions as of 2004 are for the following reasons:“having a baby would dramatically change my life” and “I can’t afford a baby now.”

Want to know what's cheaper? Going on the pill, getting a Depo Shot, or keeping your legs closed.”

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19. mrp said... on Dec 22, 2011 at 05:35PM

“gale-may you be stricken with parasites!”

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20. mrp said... on Dec 22, 2011 at 05:38PM

“gale-after you are stricken by parasites, may the only cure be for you to have a child.”

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21. Anonymous said... on Dec 22, 2011 at 06:02PM



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