Despite conclusive evidence from leading scientists and the National Cancer Institute of the National Institutes of Health that there is no link between abortion and breast cancer, the Texas state legislature passed a bill yesterday requiring doctors tell women seeking abortions that there is a possible link between abortion and breast cancer. Dubbed one of the most sweeping abortion counseling laws in the nation, the bill is likely to be signed into law by Republican Governor Rick Perry. “They don’t care what science says,” Claudia Stravato, chief executive officer of Planned Parenthood of Amarillo and the Texas Panhandle told the Los Angeles Times. “It’s like talking to the Flat Earth Society.”
The law also will require women to wait 24 hours before getting an abortion. Prior to this 24-hour waiting period, doctors must provide women with information about medical risks, adoption alternatives, requirements about the liability of the father to pay child support and color pictures of the developmental stages of the fetus. “It’s going to place a real hardship on women in communities that don’t have abortion providers with the 24-hour waiting period,” Kae McLaughlin, executive director of the Texas Abortion and Reproductive Rights Action League told the Houston Chronicle. Currently, there are abortion providers in only 15 of Texas’ 254 counties, according to McLaughlin.
According to the Center for Reproductive Rights, 23 states mandate waiting periods for abortions. Mississippi, Louisiana, Utah, and Wisconsin require in-person counseling within the 24-hour delay – while Mississippi and Minnesota require doctors give information about a possible link between abortion and breast cancer.