Pro-Life Legislation Enacted Elsewhere
Special Report - September 28, 2009
About 60 pro-life measures were enacted in 2009, and nearly every state considered at least one piece of pro-life legislation, according to a new report from Americans United for Life (AUL). The report, “2009 State Legislative Sessions in Review,” which was released September 22, notes that despite a 33 percent decline in the number of pro-life bills that were introduced in 2009, compared to 2008 (when 45 states considered at least 450 pro-life measures), there was “marked increase” in the number of pro-life measures that were actually enacted this year compared to the year before.
“Clearly, we are making progress at the state levellaw by law and state by stateto protect and defend life,” said Dr. Charmaine Yoest, President and CEO of AUL. “We are encouraged by the progress that has been made in 2009 and enthusiastically look forward to working with pro-life legislators to advance pro-life legislation and policies in 2010.”
In 2009, AUL reports that at least 300 abortion-related measures were introduced in the states, and the vast majority of these measures were pro-life. The most popular measures introduced in state legislatures in 2009 dealt with informed consent for abortion, increased parental control (consent or notification), ultrasound requirements, and safety and health requirements for abortion clinics. Among the key findings in the AUL report:
- For the first time in three years, “measures to regulate biotechnologies and to prohibit or restrict technologies that destroy nascent life increased by nearly 20 percent.”
- In at least 10 states, including North Carolina, measures were introduced to either require parental consent for abortion, or “modify existing consent requirements.” Of these states, Arizona modified its existing parental notification law to require written notarized consent from parents for an abortion on a minor.
- In at least six states, including North Carolina, measures were introduced to “criminalize assaults on pregnant women” and create enhanced penalties for this crime.
- In at least 22 states, including North Carolina, measures related to ultrasound requirements were introduced (such as requiring an abortion provider to offer an ultrasound prior to performing an abortion). Ultrasound-related laws were enacted in Kansas, North Dakota and Nebraska.
- “Choose Life” specialty license plates measures were introduced in at least seven states, including North Carolina, and enacted in Virginia.
As we reported earlier this year, a wide range of pro-life measures were introduced in the North Carolina General Assembly in 2009 but none of these measures were even brought up for discussion. Only one pro-life measure remains eligible for consideration in 2010, and that is HB 168/SB 210“Choose Life” Special Plate.
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