OK Governor Approves Three Anti-Choice Bills

Oklahoma Governor Brad Henry (R) signed three anti-choice bills into law yesterday. The first bill outlaws sex selective abortion, the second bill institutes a “conscience clause” allowing healthcare providers to refuse to participate in abortion procedures or refer patients to abortion providers, and the third bill puts restrictions on the administration of mifepristone (also known as RU-486) by requiring it be administered in the presence of a physician. According to NewsOK, since all three measures have at least two-thirds backing from the Legislature, they contain an emergency clause, which allows them to take effect immediately. Each bill was previously part of a single bill approved by the legislature and signed by Governor Henry. Early in March, the Oklahoma Supreme Court upheld the February ruling of a state District Court saying the law was unconstitutional on the basis that it violates state rules requiring legislation address only a single subject. The Center for Reproductive Rights has filed several lawsuits against the individual measures. Their Staff Attorney Stephanie Toti criticized the laws, the Jurist reports, arguing that “they violate a myriad of constitutional principles, from freedom of speech to due process to equal protection of the law.”


Feminist Daily Newswire 3/31/10; SB 1890, 1891, 1902; NewsOK 4/6/10; Jurist 4/6/10

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