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Democrats Denounce Bill Requiring Ultrasound Before Abortion

News release from House Democratic Caucus:
NASHVILLE, Tenn. – House Democrats are denouncing legislation filed by Sen. Jim Tracy (R-14) which would intrude on the doctor-patient relationship and violate patient privacy. The bill, SB632, would require that a woman seeking to terminate a pregnancy be forced to undergo a medically unnecessary ultrasound procedure. If the woman declines to view the image of the ultrasound, the doctor would be forced to describe the fetus while the woman listens.
“Tennessee’s women should not have to suffer more intrusive laws that violate their right to privacy just so Sen. Tracy can polish his conservative credentials in his race against Congressman Scott DesJarlais,” said Rep. Sherry Jones (D-59). “Republicans have spent the past three years complaining about how the government shouldn’t stand between a patient and their doctor, but with this legislation, that is exactly what they are trying to do.”
SB632 is nearly identical to a law passed in 2010 by the Oklahoma State Legislature. Oklahoma HB2780 required the doctor to perform an ultrasound and describe the fetus to the patient. In December of 2012, the Oklahoma Supreme Court upheld a lower court decision that declared this law unconstitutional per the Oklahoma State Constitution.
“If Sen. Tracy is truly interested in preventing abortions, he should take the money that we will have to pay to defend this potentially unconstitutional law, and put it towards preventative contraception, prenatal health care, and pre-K education,” said Rep. Gloria Johnson (D-13). “As a woman and a teacher, I wish my fellow legislators would focus less time on trying to play doctor, and more time on helping women gain access to quality health care, a good education, and higher-paying jobs.”
SB632: As introduced, requires that an ultrasound be performed prior to an abortion, with an exception for medical emergencies. – Amends TCA Title 39, Chapter 15; Title 63, Chapter 6; Title 63, Chapter 9 and Title 68, Chapter 11. http://wapp.capitol.tn.gov/apps/BillInfo/Default.aspx?BillNumber=SB0632&ga=108
Oklahoma HB2780 requires that women seeking an abortion undergo a fetal ultrasound procedure, and requires doctors to describe the fetus to the patient. http://webserver1.lsb.state.ok.us/cf_pdf/2009-10%20ENR/hB/HB2780%20ENR.PDF
Oklahoma Case No. CV – 2010 – 533: Nova Health Systems v. E Scott Pruitt. Oklahoma court case finding HB2780 unconstitutional. http://dl.dropbox.com/u/60576527/Nova%20Health%20Systems%20v.%20Oklahoma%20AG.TIF