Abortion opponents pursue ban early in pregnancy


Anti-abortion advocates say they will urge Congress to ban surgical abortions after six weeks of gestation. Abortion rights advocates say the proposal is radical and will go to great lengths to oppose it.

Surrounded by more than 20 colleagues in the reverberating Capitol Rotunda, Senator Joni Albrecht outlined the legislation she will introduce in the coming days.

“The Nebraska Heartbeat Act requires a doctor to perform an ultrasound to hear the heartbeat of the fetus before performing an abortion. Except, it’s illegal to have an abortion,” Albrecht said.

Proponents of the law say heartbeats can be detected about six weeks into pregnancy, or after a woman’s last menstrual period. Abortion rights advocates say the term “heartbeat” is misleading. This is because electrical activity can be detected as early as 6 weeks of age. However, there is no functioning heart.

Albrecht also said he would introduce legislation that would provide up to $10 million in tax credits for those who contribute to organizations that help pregnant women. Toni Clarke, executive director of her Assure Women’s Health Center in Omaha, said her organization does more than just help women.

“Families who need material support can find it at a pregnancy support organization. We help find homes, sometimes even cars, and we prepare moms and dads to be better parents through parenting classes,” Clark said.

Albrecht last year proposed a law banning all abortions, but the effort failed. She said allowing an exception in this year’s proposal should help the bill succeed.

“Of course we want the bill to pass. And if those are the hurdles we need to consider, those are the things we needed to do. 85% of babies will be saved by the ban,” she said.

In fact, according to the latest Nebraska Department of Health and Human Services, about 65% of abortions occur after six weeks of pregnancy. Abrecht’s office said heartbeats could be detected between her 5th week and her 6th week, thus ruling out procedures performed after 5 weeks.

Senator Megan Hunt, an abortion rights advocate, said the six-week ban would hurt women.

“A six-week abortion ban is an abortion ban. We know it will cost disproportionately to Nebraskans in income, and Nebraskans who are already struggling to make ends meet,” Hunt said.

Senator Daniel Conrad, another abortion rights advocate, said Nebraskans should vote against the proposal.

“No matter how it is delivered, no matter what misleading political rhetoric is utilized, this is an extreme anti-abortion ban. And Nebraskans need to get engaged. They need to figure it out quickly, they need to connect with their state senators, they need to speak up online, they need to speak up in their communities, they need to say no There is,” said Conrad.

Albrecht predicted he would get the vote to overcome opposition filibusters, and Hunt said he expected enough senators to oppose the proposal to prevent it from passing.

Hunt introduced two amendments to the Nebraska Constitution that would enshrine abortion rights. “It’s important to put it on the ballot to give Nebraskans the choice and the opportunity to say, ‘I support reproductive rights in Nebraska,'” she said. We do not stand between patients and their doctors on this important issue. ” And we need to give Nebraskans a chance to say that,” said Hunt.

Both the bill and the proposed constitutional amendment are subject to public hearings in the coming weeks.



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