Missouri Abortion Bill Would Require Waiting Period

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Missouri could join the ranks of Utah and South Dakota as the third state that requires women to wait three days after seeing a doctor to have an abortion, if a new bill is passed.

The Missouri House voted 115-39 on Tuesday to send the bill to the Senate. The vote came a few hours after hundreds of anti-abortion advocates rallied at the state Capitol in support of the proposed new legislation.

“If you are going to make a decision about life or death, shouldn’t it take more than three days to think about it?” asked House Speaker Tim Jones, R-Eureka, at the rally.

However, not everyone agrees with the Speaker and opponents of the bill believe requiring a mandatory 72-hour waiting period may make getting an abortion more dangerous.

“Having politicians force women to further delay when they have abortions is wrong and it will force women to undergo more complicated abortion procedures,” said Paula Gianino, president and CEO of Planned Parenthood of the St. Louis Region and Southwest Missouri.

Twitter was also vocal about the bill:

Nine Democrats joined Republicans in supporting the bill. The final vote tally is six more than what is needed to override a veto from Democratic Governor Jay Nixon. The governor has previously allowed other abortion restrictions to become law without the need for his signature.

Although it is still unclear if this will be the case for this piece of legislation, Nixon said he would thoroughly review the waiting period bill.

Supporters of the bill feel the extra two days allows women to consult with their family members and give the thought more consideration before going through with the abortions. Missouri already has a 24-hour waiting period for abortions, unless the abortion is needed in a medical emergency.

In addition to the extra days, the bill would also require doctors to give women considering abortion written information about the procedure, along with a video, and the opportunity to hear the fetus’ heartbeats.

What do you think about the bill? Leave your thoughts in the “comments” section.

Image via Wikimedia Commons

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