Apologies if you this makes you throw something through your computer screen, but the Jason Vorhees of anti-abortion legislation is baaaaack. That’s right, folks: the South Dakota abortion ban. These assholes just don’t know when to quit.
South Dakotans trying to outlaw most abortions in the state filed a proposed initiated law Friday that includes exceptions for rape, incest and the mother’s health.
A 2006 proposal that passed the Legislature but was rejected by voters would have allowed abortions only if the woman’s life were in danger.
Supporters of the new petition now must gather 16,776 signatures of registered voters by April 1 to add an initiated measure to the Nov. 4, 2008 general election ballot, said Elections Supervisor Kea Warne.
Thirteen people sponsored the petition, including Dr. Patricia Giebink, a Chamberlain obstetrician-gynecologist who performed abortions at Planned Parenthood in Sioux Falls in 1996 and 1997. In 2006, she started working on the campaign to ban them.
The proposal would effectively prohibit abortions as a means of birth control, Giebink said.
“This is what the people said they wanted after the 2006 campaign. And a number of polls since then indicate a majority of people believe abortion should not be a method of birth control,” Giebink said.
“We have worked with a panel of experts to ensure this bill will make a good law. We went with what we did before, plus we made the changes that we said the people wanted.”
The South Dakota Campaign for Healthy Families, the lead opposition group to the 2006 vote, started gathering petitions in October to urge lawmakers not to revisit the issue in the 2008 lawmaking session.
Jan Nicolay, co-chairman of the group and a former lawmaker, said at the time that people were unhappy with state lawmakers for continuing to push the abortion issue.
Nicolay could not be reached immediately Friday for comment on the latest effort to put it back before voters.
According to the petition, doctors who perform an abortion outside the proposed law’s conditions could be charged with a Class 4 felony, which carries a maximum punishment of 10 years in prison and a $20,000 fine.
Is this stupid thing going to wreak havoc on people’s lives forever? How many times must a piece of legislation die before we can truly declare it dead? By my count, it has to be on at least it’s fourth life already:
Although the 2006 proposed abortion ban passed the Legislature, opponents of the measure gathered enough signatures to put the issue on the ballot. Voters rejected the ban by a margin of 56 percent to 44 percent.
The 2007 Legislature took another run at the issue. It ended when the state Senate refused to revive a bill that had cleared the House but was later killed in a Senate committee. That measure would also have allowed abortions only in instances of rape and incest or to protect a woman’s health or life.
You know, it sounds to me like the “right-to-lifers” need to get lives of their own. I suppose that we can’t expect misogynists of such a high caliber to understand this, but no means no. Don’t these asshats have anything to do? Is South Dakota so utterly without problems that they can’t find anything better to waste their time on than this? Build a fucking road, people.
Also, I have to say a few words to Dr. Giebink. So, you used to perform abortions and now you think that abortions are bad. Okay, well, whatever — you can think whatever you like. But come on, you’re a doctor for Christ’s sake — show some damn self-respect. Abortion is birth control. Whether you like it or not, that’s what it is. Whether it’s elective or medical, whether the woman became impregnated with a husband or by a rapist, that’s what abortion is. It controls whether or not a woman gives birth. This is what we call birth control. And obviously, someone with a medical degree who used to work for Planned Parenthood has to know this. All of the “abortion shouldn’t be birth control” bullshit pisses me off to no end as it is, more because of the implications I know are behind it than for it’s massive logical flaw. But from a doctor, and not just any doctor, but a doctor who actually used to perform abortions . . .
Zombie abortion bill must’ve eaten her brain.
There is a really thin sliver lining, and it’s this:
The law that guides how signatures can be gathered changed this year. Now, people circulating petitions must be South Dakota residents and can’t get paid on a per-signature basis, Warne said.
Well that’s something, I suppose. Still, 16,000 signatures is not a lot, even in a state so small (and with so little access) that only 800 abortions are performed there every year. But it does mean goodbye to Operation Rescue. Though unfortunately, Leslee Unruh gets to stay. Not that I would ever be so cruel as to wish her on another state.