Indiana Lawmakers Seek Dramatic Restrictions On Abortion

INDIANAPOLIS (CBS) — State lawmakers in Indiana are working to enact some of the highest abortion restrictions in the country.

Lawmakers in the Republican-controlled state General Assembly are working toward making Indiana among the states with the earliest stage of pregnancy in which abortions would be illegal, and requiring women to be told in writing that they could face a greater risk of infertility and breast cancer if they have abortions.

The law would also require women undergoing abortions be told that life begins at conception, and that a fetus might feel pain at or before 20 weeks.

Indiana State Rep. Eric Turner (R-Cicero), a sponsor of the bill, tells The Associated Press he hopes the bill would make Indiana one of the “most pro-life states in the country” and would achieve the goal of having “less abortion in the state.”

The bill cleared the state House of Representatives 72-23 late last month, and a similar bill passed 39-9 in February. A state Senate committee is expected to discuss advancing the House bill ahead of an April 29 deadline.

The bill would ban abortions after the 20th week of pregnancy unless there is a substantial threat to the woman’s life or health. Nebraska and North Carolina are the only other states with laws that restrictive.

Abortion rights supporters say the proposed restrictions would harm women and their doctor-patient relationship. Planned Parenthood Advocates of Indiana calls it “an unprecedented assault on the right of Hoosier women to control their own fertility.”

“If successful, these purely political efforts to restrict access to reproductive health care would devastate low-income and uninsured Hoosiers who rely on Planned Parenthood of Indiana for exams, Pap tests, STD screening and treatment and family planning information,” Planned Parenthood Advocates of Indiana says on its Web site.

But abortion rights groups have been able to do little to block the legislation.

(TM and © Copyright 2011 CBS Radio Inc. and its relevant subsidiaries. CBS Radio and EYE Logo TM and Copyright 2011 CBS Broadcasting Inc. Used under license. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed. The Associated Press contributed to this report.)

  • Ron

    What is wrong with these idiot Indiana law makers? Why can’t they leave well enough alone? Why does anyone feel the need to make any changes in the current abortion laws? Especially when it restricts people’s freedom. Leave it alone.

  • Native Chicagoan

    This is a difficult and hot topic, but it cannot be ignored. Aside from the extremely small percentage of abortions done due to a real rape, there exists many women who regret having abortions. Why are these women ignored? I don’t understand if Planned Parenthood (PP) is in the biz of giving out birth control and teaching safe sex practices, why all the abortions? The act of aborting your fetus has been portrayed as simply a procedure to get rid of the fetus and than to live life as you wish. But an abortion has repercussions. Planned Parenthood is lying when it won’t fess up to the money it has taken for its abortion money making enterprise (i.e., business). What is the cost and the payback for abortion’s services rendered by PP? I would guess abortions cost a lot more than an STD screen or a breast exam, and thereby PP gets more cash back. There sure are a lot of fancy buildings for PP. What is wrong with giving pregnant women facts? These are facts that are the truth. Why would anyone, except for pimps, want it any other way? Once a pregnant woman is giving the facts, it is ultimately her choice to live with for the rest of her life, this includes pushing the father out of the picture. However, the cash making business of abortion should not include cash out of the pockets and bank accounts of back-breaking, working taxpayers to pay for her sex mistake. Many of these taxpayers, poor and rich, value and want children but cannot get pregnant! Most cuoples engaged in sexual activity know how a baby is started. Condoms, Birth Control, and more are available and certainly women or men are no longer shunned if asked for. If abortion were made less super easy to get, I’d bet it would result in responsible sex and more women who didn’t want to become pregnant, get engaged in preventing a pregnancy from occurring. The Indiana lawmakers are correct in facing this draconian dilemma. What we might see are PP employees mad because they lost funds or their jobs, which begs the question, does anyone think PP is behind the encouragement of irresponsible sex?

    • Connie

      Don’t forget that many women getting abortions are back-breaking tax payers who want to keep the right. I for one am 100% in favor of pro-choice. Abotion is like the very last chance birth control. Many teen girls benefit from this option, allowing them to continue to advance themselves.

      • Native Chicagoan

        Abortion should not be used as a form of birth control. Teen girls who have become pregnant and chose not to continue the pregnancy, hopefully had the education to avoid a future unwanted pregnancy, e.g. birth control pills. I don’t think that happens at PP. The hysteria from those who want taxpayers to fund abortions are the same people who are screaming that access and the priviledge living in this society has giving to have PP do STD screenings and breast exams will be taking away. That is simply not true. Those practices will be untouched. Abortion is the issue. There are repercussions from having an abortion and a teen is not protected from that insult. You compare some working women who pay taxes and who get abortions to keep the right to use abortion as a form of birth control? You refer to abortion as an option? How about taking a poll from working people who pay taxes whether they want to pay for all these abortions? How about people who are pro choice and who work and pay taxes and who have abortions themselves, as you say, set up a fund to provide abortions for the women who cannot afford them? Would that be okay with you? If not, why not? Have a national poll. Set up a fund for abortions by all the pro choice people, and tap into only that account for abortions.

      • Connie

        @NativeChicagoan, I have no problem at all with my tax dollars going to abortions. In all fairness, all of the anti-abortion activists should throw money into a pool to pay for all of the children who are born due to the lack of abortion services. Like it or not, abortion is birth control, the very last chance. There are no repercussions from abortion, unless you dwell on it. I think Planned Parenthood isn’t the evil entity you think it is.

  • Native Chicagoan

    Presently! and for many years now, taxpayers are funding services for people who cannot afford out of pocket or private expenses. We are paying for many things for people who cannot afford it, e.g., daycare, public schools, medicaid, WIC, etc. Taxpayers are aware and want to know where there money is going. You have a lack of understanding of other people who abhor the practice of abortion, and worse yet, for them, they are presently forced to have to pay for it with their hard earned tax dollars. Why? Also, pregnant woman, (emancipated) teens who are considering abortion, and possibly others (support persons okayed by the pregnant woman), have a right to know of repercussions from abortions and the right to receive counseling of the type proposed. There are repercussions from abortions. It appears you are convinced it is just a easy procedure or option. Which is likely how PP presents it to vulnerable teens, especially. Why don’t you look up the videos about Planned Parenthood employees being lockstep with pimps? There is a bright young woman, named Lila Rose, who is trying to get normal people to look at the practices of PP. This is ugly stuff. After viewing, answer yourself the question, How do you think teen girls advanced in their lives in those conditions?

  • Marty

    What exactly are the repercussions from abortions? All I see is the relief of not being pregnant anymore.

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