Two weeks ago, we published an article in which I expressed the view that criticizing Rep. Dan Johnston’s (R – District 24) informed consent abortion bill was just stupid. HB 1336, also called the “Abortion Reversal Bill”, seeks to add two sections to North Dakota’s existing informed consent laws by mandating that women seeking termination of a pregnancy by an “abortion-inducing drug” be made aware that it’s possible to reverse its effects. Besides the typical opposition from those who support eliminating the unborn, even one self-proclaimed pro-life blogger wrote that the bill is a “bad idea”.
A week ago, the House Human Services Committee held a hearing on HB 1336. If there was any question in the minds of those in attendance of what this bill would mean for some women, the questions were answered when McKenzie McCoy stepped to the podium and expressed her regret for undergoing a medication-induced abortion years before:
“I really wish I would have had the knowledge that there could have been a possibility to reverse it and save my child.”
McCoy’s testimony left the room silent as she fought to regain her composure from the stirring comments. Ultimately, the committee gave it an 8-3-3 Do Pass recommendation.
Even with committee support, we were left to wonder what the outcome would be once the bill hit the House floor for debate. Those questions were answered today.
Rep. Rick Becker (R – District 7) — who also happens to be a Board Certified Physician — gave a compelling argument for the bill from his perspective as a doctor. But it was Human Services Committee member and bill carrier Kathy Skroch (R – District 26) — who also happens to be a nurse/CNA — that absolutely knocked it out of the park with her comments during the floor debate:
“I, as a woman — as every woman in this state — have the right to be fully informed before making a medical decision. To have access to all information related to any medical procedure. To know all of my options before making any medical decision. Then I’m able to make an informed choice. I also have the right to change my mind and choose an alternate choice, when I feel it is in my best interests. This bill provides women with a fully informed choice. And for many women, a second choice— a second chance.”
She spoke twice, and you can see her comments here. I highly recommend that you listen to them.
Rep. Mary Schneider (D – District 21) — who also sits on the Human Services Committee — rose in opposition to the bill twice, but it was to no avail. When the dust had settled, HB 1336 easily passed by a vote of 73-16.
The unfortunate aspect of the victory was that four Republicans sided with Rep. Schneider and other Democrats in opposition to the bill. I think they’re deserving of having their names listed. They were:
Rep. Thomas Beadle (R – District 27)
Rep. George Keiser (R – District 47)
Rep. Bob Martinson (R – District 35)
Rep. Denton Zubke (R – District 39)
The bill will now go to the Senate for consideration.
PLEASE LIKE & SHARE!