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JULY 9, 2002
2:23 PM
Jody Frisch  202-973-3032
House Panel Plays Politics With Women's Health, Holds Hearing On So-Called 'Partial-Birth' Abortion Ban - NARAL
WASHINGTON - July 9 - "With the intent of injecting inflammatory rhetoric into an election year and eroding the protections of Roe v. Wade, anti-choice lawmakers are yet again pushing an unconstitutional bill banning abortion procedures," stated NARAL President Kate Michelman. Today members on the Constitution Sub-committee of the House Judiciary Committee held a hearing on HR 4965: the "Partial-Birth Abortion Ban Act of 2002," introduced by Rep. Steve Chabot (R-Ohio).

"Congressman Chabot's bill contains the very same constitutional flaws struck down by the Supreme Court in Stenberg v. Carhart. The bill imposes an undue burden on the woman, does not include a health exception, or does it identify the specific procedure it seeks to ban." Michelman continued, "It revives inflammatory rhetoric by using graphic images, sensationalized language and misinformation to strip the protections of Roe v. Wade."

"For the fifth unsuccessful time in seven years, anti-choice members are playing politics with women's lives, health and safety," stated Michelman. "They continue to try to find ways to further their agenda of using the government to make abortion illegal and unavailable through this deceptive and unconstitutional legislation."

Respected medical organizations, including the American College of Obstetrician and Gynecologists, the American Medical Women's Association and the American Nurses Association, among others, oppose these bans. Michelman concluded, "Apparently, anti-choice members believe politicians are better suited to advise American women on private, safe medical care."

"This so-called 'partial-birth' abortion ban is nothing short of a political stunt to shift the focus from the fact that women, not the government, should make medical decisions. Fortunately, the Supreme Court has a precedence of putting personal privacy above politics."


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