Yellowhammer Fund, an abortion fund and reproductive justice organization headquartered in Alabama, on Wednesday condemned the committee passage of Alabama HB 248, a bill that proposes to address claims of viable fetuses being born despite an abortion procedure being performed.
“The state of Alabama does not allow abortion after 22-weeks gestation – and clinics measure pregnancies via ultrasound to ensure that line is not crossed. That means the entire justification for this law is an utter fantasy,” said Mia Raven, Policy Director of Yellowhammer Fund. “If there were any indication that viable fetuses were somehow being birthed in failed abortions and not provided with medical care, you can be certain the extreme anti-abortion activists would have had such cases front and center by now. This is simply an anti-choice fever dream meant to vilify doctors and stigmatize the abortion procedure, with the added benefit of giving politicians in Alabama something to campaign on for 2020.”
Raven disputes bill sponsor Rep. Ginny Shaver’s claims to have insider knowledge from the Alabama Department of Public Health that proves that abortion clinics are failing to document fetal viability – a statement that either implicates the ADPH in not keeping medical records confidential, or is a fabrication made up for political gain. Raven suspects it is the later, and calls on the ADPH to weigh in on whether it has been breaching confidentiality.
“Alabama’s lawmakers are so desperate to be seen as banning abortions they’ve now had to resort to making things up,” added Raven. “Perhaps that’s a sign that they should find something else to legislate rather than a person’s uterus.”