ND House Defeats Breastfeeding Reform Bill

Rep. Karen Karls (R - District 25) urges a red vote on HB 1330. This bill proposed to remove the requirements that women breastfeed in a "discreet and modest" manner while in public or private and are "otherwise authorized to be". The bill was defeated by a vote of 32-61.

Last Saturday, we published an article expressing the opinion that women shouldn’t be able to dictate to private business owners and property owners what they will and won’t permit when it comes to breastfeeding on their property. Without question, it’s an unpopular position to take on an issue that evokes a lot of passion with some mothers. Nevertheless, I think it’s the right one. Not because I oppose breastfeeding, but how can property rights exist if the owner of said property doesn’t have ultimate control over what goes on there?

As I said in the aforementioned article, current law — passed in 2009 — already prohibits a private business from refusing to let a woman breastfeed in their establishment. What House Bill 1330 would have done is eliminate “in a discreet and modest manner” and impose a penalty for anyone prohibiting breastfeeding. You can imagine how laissez-faire this had the potential to be.

The fascinating thing about HB 1330 was that many breastfeeding moms opposed the legislation and felt that it was unnecessary and went too far. Even Rep. Karen Karls (R – District 35) — who acknowledged breastfeeding all four of her children — carried the bill to the floor for debate and urged a red vote.

To be fair, I don’t think the bill would have changed too much in terms of how women across the state breastfeed their babies. I think the vast majority of them do so in a discreet and modest manner. But this bill would have completely opened the door to any who wanted to do otherwise. And that simply shouldn’t be an option when it’s someone else’s property.

The North Dakota House got it right when they defeated this bill yesterday by a vote of 32-61.



  1. https://theminutemanblog.com/2019/02/09/no-you-dont-have-a-right-to-breastfeed-in-a-private-business/
  2. https://www.legis.nd.gov/assembly/66-2019/bill-index/bi1330.html
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About T. Arthur Mason 874 Articles
T. Arthur Mason is a native North Dakotan who has spent nearly all of his life in the Peace Garden State. As the third of four children in Western North Dakota, Mason grew to appreciate family and the outdoors. Some of his fondest memories are annual deer hunts with family and friends. In his early teenage years, faith became a central part of T. Arthur Mason's life. He and the majority of his family attend church together on a weekly basis and find this a fulfilling aspect of their lives. Through the influence of his father, T. Arthur Mason became intrigued with politics. As a boy, he attended political events with his father and enjoyed the friendships that resulted as a byproduct of those political associations. As Mason grew older, he became convinced that the quote often attributed to Thomas Jefferson was true, "That government is best which governs least." Today, T. Arthur Mason enjoys time with his wife and children, an occasional hunt, and an increasingly active life on the political scene. This blog is the fulfillment of a dream to design a web site in the realm of politics and to advocate for the principles of Liberty and constitutionally limited government. On behalf of all those that contribute to The Minuteman, we hope you enjoy your time on the site and will share the message with others.