I am puzzled by this decision and disappointed of Gov. Sebelius. I'm also troubled by the law applying to "abortion providers who use ultrasound or monitor fetal heartbeats " ; how long before the provisions of the law are mandated to all abortion providers ? yet another roadblock for women who have already made their decision to obtain an abortion.
Kansas Governor Signs Bill on Offering Ultrasounds Before Abortion
TOPEKA, Kan. (AP) — Gov. Kathleen Sebelius, President Obama’s nominee to lead the Health and Human Services Department, has signed a bill requiring that women seeking abortions in Kansas be allowed to see ultrasound images or hear the fetus’s heartbeat before the procedure.
The measure, which the governor signed on Friday, requires abortion providers who use ultrasound or monitor fetal heartbeats to give their patients access to the images or sound at least 30 minutes before an abortion. The amended law takes effect July 1.
A spokeswoman for Ms. Sebelius, Beth Martino, said the governor had concluded that the bill had no constitutional flaws, did not jeopardize patient privacy and did not block access to health services.
In the past, Ms. Sebelius has vetoed legislation sought by anti-abortion groups.
Peter Brownlie, president and chief executive officer of Planned Parenthood of Kansas and Mid-Missouri, said that the organization’s clinic in Overland Park already allowed women to see ultrasound images, but that few accepted the offer. “We had hoped that Governor Sebelius would veto the bill, and we’re disappointed that she did not,” Mr. Brownlie said. “We give people complete information so they can make their own decisions.”
The law also requires providers to post a notice saying it is illegal for anyone to try to force a woman to have an abortion.
Supporters of the bill said it would ensure that women had enough information to make decisions about abortion and protect their health. The law makes Kansas the 13th state to require that abortion providers offer patients a chance to see ultrasound images.
Kansas abortion opponents had predicted that Ms. Sebelius, who is awaiting Senate confirmation for the health and human services post, would sign the bill to appear more moderate.