Nebraska Gov. Dave Heineman has signed two landmark abortion bills into law that both sides of the abortion debate say are firsts in the country.
One bars abortions at and after 20 weeks of pregnancy based on assertions that fetuses feel pain at that time. The current standard is viability, or when a fetus is able to survive outside the womb.
Abortion-rights advocates say that is a clear break with court precedent and it won't withstand a court challenge. Supporters of the ban see an opening in previous court rulings.
The other bill signed by Heineman will require doctors or other health professionals to assess whether women have risk factors that could lead to mental or physical problems after an abortion.
In their zeal to punish women and target abortion providers -- one in particular -- Nebraskan lawmakers completely disregarded the sciencey-facty evidence they were presented with.
As we reported here, the 'assertions' that fetuses feel pain at or before 20 weeks is pure hogwash.
As are assertions that abortion causes psychological or mental problems as we reported here.
The aim of the first law is simple, to target late-abortion provider Dr LeRoy Carhart, one of the few remaining specialists left in the US, since Dr. George Tiller was murdered.
Late-term abortions are those performed past 20 weeks gestation, so that 20-week limit is the giveaway of the law's intent. By the way, less than 1 per cent of abortions in Canada and just over 1 per cent in the US are done after 20 weeks and for pretty dire reasons. In Canada, 90 per cent of abortions are done at or before 13 weeks.
And, sadly, this will affect not just Nebraskan women, but women from all over the US desperately seeking such specialized procedures from Dr. Carhart.
Canadian women too.
In Canada, a woman cannot have an elective abortion past 24 weeks gestation. There are simply no doctors and no facilities that will allow for an elective termination at that point. In fact, there are only a few doctors in the entire country who are willing to perform abortions past 20 weeks. As there are different methods of abortion, each woman's pregnancy is individually assessed by a doctor to help decide which method is safest and best for her. However, since abortion services after 20 weeks are not easily available in Canada, many women who seek an abortion at this point must either travel to another province or to the United States, or must continue to carry the pregnancy to term.
Fetus fetishists are celebrating today. And normal people are left -- again -- shaking their heads at the sadistic cruelty of these meddling shitheads.
* The motto of the state.