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Oklahoma Legislature Overrides Governor’s Veto of Anti-Abortion Bill

The Oklahoma Legislature overrode the governor’s veto of an omnibus anti-abortion bill on Thursday. The so-called Freedom of Conscience Act (see Word Document) combines several anti-abortion measures including a requirement that all women must have an ultrasound prior to obtaining an abortion, according to the Daily Women’s Health Policy Report.

Governor Brad Henry told the Associated Press, “I do not think it is morally responsible for the state to victimize those victims for a second time by forcing them to undergo an ultrasound and hear a detailed description of it after they have made the difficult and heart-wrenching decision to end their pregnancy.”

The bill allows health care workers to refuse to participate in any actions that they feel are contrary to their religious beliefs and moral convictions. The bill also requires that abortion providers post large signs stating that it is “against the law for anyone, regardless of his or her relationship to you, to force you to have an abortion.” The bill also regulates the use of Mifepristone.

Missouri and Kentucky legislatures have tried to pass similar bills.

Sources:

Associated Press 04/16/08, 04/17/08; Daily Women�s Health Policy Report 04/18/08; Feminist Newswire 04/14/08; Oklahoma Senate Bill 1878