News / USA

Legislators Imposing Limits on Abortion at US State Level

Legislators Imposing Limits on Abortion at US State Leveli
X
July 19, 2013 8:01 PM
The governor of Texas signed into law Thursday tough new restrictions on abortion after the state legislature approved the measure that intensified passions on both sides of the issue. VOA's Greg Flakus reports from the state capital, Austin, that opponents of the law say their fight is not over, even as the battle over abortion has spread to 30 states during the past year.
Greg Flakus
The governor of Texas signed into law Thursday tough new restrictions on abortion after the state legislature approved the measure that intensified passions on both sides of the issue. In state capital Austin, opponents of the law say their fight is not over, even as the battle over abortion has spread to 30 states during the past year.

The Texas Capitol was besieged by emotional protest - those in blue pushing to restrict abortions and opponents of the restrictions wearing orange.  

One of them was Krista, an opponent of Texas abortion law, who said, "I don't know, but to me it feels like a political movement backed by religion trying to force the values of a minority of Americans on the rest of us,"

Some anti-abortion protestors, though, who call themselves "pro-life," see this as an ethical issue that goes beyond religion.

For Gloria Jane it is personal, and she expressed regret over the abortion she had as a teenager. "Abortion is just not right, it is just not right, you will feel the pain from it later."

And now Republican Governor Rick Perry has signed the measure, which outlaws abortions after 20 weeks of pregnancy and requires costly upgrades to abortion clinics.

The law was passed by the Republican-dominated legislature. Democrats promised lawsuits to block its implementation.

National groups pushing for a woman’s right to an abortion, which call themselves “pro-choice,” say the new Texas law is similar to those passed in other states.

Elizabeth Nash follows abortion legislation for the Guttmacher Institute in Washington. "There have been 180 abortion restrictions enacted since 2012 in a total of 30 states, so that is just a huge number of restrictions in a huge part of the country," she said.

The U.S. Supreme Court has ruled that abortion is legal but that the states can regulate it.

So, pro-life groups are sponsoring legislation state-by-state to impose stricter regulations on clinics and doctors who perform abortions, especially late-term procedures. They are gaining ground in Republican-dominated states, although they are facing challenges in court.

In Kansas, a law requiring that women seeking abortions be hospitalized has been challenged by a judge

A new North Dakota law that requires abortion doctors to be given admitting privileges at nearby hospitals also is under challenge. A similar law signed by Alabama's governor has been blocked by the courts.

Abortion opponents are fueled, though, by the recent trial of a Philadelphia doctor convicted of murder in late term abortions at his clinic described as a "house of horrors."

Mallory Quigley, who represents the Susan B. Anthony List, said, “This is a problem that needs to be dealt with now and we have got to stop the abortionists that are brutalizing women, brutalizing late-term children capable of feeling pain.”

In public opinion polls, most Americans do oppose late-term abortions, but a large majority also opposes an outright ban on abortions.

You May Like

Turbulent Transition Imperils Tunisia’s Arab Spring Gains

Critics say new anti-terrorism laws worsen Tunisia's situation while others put faith in country’s vibrant civil organizations, women’s movement More

Burundi’s Political Crisis May Become Humanitarian One

United Nations aid agencies issue warning as deadly violence sends tens of thousands fleeing More

Yemenis Adjust to Life Under Houthi Rule

Locals want warring parties to strike deal to stop bloodletting before deciding how country is governed More

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
Texas Town Residents Told to 'Just Leave' Ahead of Flood Threati
X
Greg Flakus
May 29, 2015 11:24 PM
Water from heavy rain in eastern and central Texas is now swelling rivers that flow into the Gulf of Mexico, threatening towns along their banks. VOA’s Greg Flakus visited the town of Wharton, southwest of Houston, where the Colorado River is close to cresting.
Video

Video Texas Town Residents Told to 'Just Leave' Ahead of Flood Threat

Water from heavy rain in eastern and central Texas is now swelling rivers that flow into the Gulf of Mexico, threatening towns along their banks. VOA’s Greg Flakus visited the town of Wharton, southwest of Houston, where the Colorado River is close to cresting.
Video

Video New York's One World Trade Center Observatory Opens to Public

From New Jersey to Long Island, from Northern suburbs to the Atlantic Ocean, with all of New York City in-between.  That view became available to the public Friday as the One World Trade Center Observatory opened in New York -- atop the replacement for the buildings destroyed in the September 11, 2001, attacks.  VOA’s Bernard Shusman reports.
Video

Video Seoul Sponsors Korean Unification Fair

With inter-Korean relations deteriorating over the North’s nuclear program, past military provocations and human rights abuses, many Koreans still hold out hope for eventual peaceful re-unification. VOA’s Brian Padden visited a “unification fair” held this week in Seoul, where border communities promoted the benefits of increased cooperation.
Video

Video Purple Door Coffeeshop: Changing Lives One Cup at a Time

For a quarter of his life, Kevin Persons lived on the street. Today, he is working behind the counter of an espresso bar, serving coffee and working to transition off the streets and into a home. Paul Vargas reports for VOA.
Video

Video Modular Robot Getting Closer to Reality

A robot being developed at Carnegie Mellon University has evolved into a multi-legged modular mechanical snake, able to move over rugged surfaces and explore the surroundings. Scientists say such machines could someday help in search and rescue operations. VOA’s George Putic reports.
Video

Video Shanghai Hosts Big Consumer Electronics Show

Electronic gadgets are a huge success in China, judging by the first Asian Consumer Electronics Show, held this week in Shanghai. Over the course of two days, more than 20,000 visitors watched, tested and played with useful and some less-useful electronic devices exhibited by about 200 manufacturers. VOA’s George Putic has more.
Video

Video Forced to Return Home, Afghan Refugees Face Increased Hardship

Undocumented refugees returning to Afghanistan from Pakistan have no jobs, no support system, and no home return to, and international aid agencies say they and the government are overwhelmed and under-resourced. Ayesha Tanzeem has more from Kabul.
Video

Video Britain Makes Controversial Move to Crack Down on Extremism

Britain is moving to tighten controls on extremist rhetoric, even when it does not incite violence or hatred -- a move that some are concerned might unduly restrict basic freedoms. It is an issue many countries are grappling with as extremist groups gain power in the Middle East, fueled in part by donations and fighters from the West. VOA’s Al Pessin reports from London.
Video

Video 3D Printer Makes Replica of Iconic Sports Car

Cars with parts made by 3D printers are already on the road, but engineers are still learning about this new technology. While testing the possibility of printing an entire car, researchers at the U.S. Department of Energy recently created an electric-powered replica of an iconic sports roadster. VOA’s George Putic has more.
Video

Video Al-Shabab Recruitment Drive Still on In Kenya

The al-Shabab militants that have long battled for control of Somalia also have recruited thousands of young people in Kenya, leaving many families disconsolate. Mohammed Yusuf recently visited the Kenyan town of Isiolo, and met with relatives of those recruited, as well as a many who have helped with the recruiting.
Video

Video A Small Oasis on Kabul's Outskirts Provides Relief From Security Tensions

When people in Kabul want to get away from the city and relax, many choose Qargha Lake, a small resort on the outskirts of Kabul. Ayesha Tanzeem visited and talked with people about the precious oasis.
Video

Video Kenyans Lament Losing Sons to al-Shabab

There is agony, fear and lost hope in the Kenyan town of Isiolo, a key target of a new al-Shabab recruitment drive. VOA's Mohammed Yusuf visits Isiolo to speak with families and at least one man who says he was a recruiter.
Video

Video Scientists Say Plankton More Important Than Previously Thought

Tiny ocean creatures called plankton are mostly thought of as food for whales and other large marine animals, but a four-year global study discovered, among other things, that plankton are a major source of oxygen on our planet. VOA’s George Putic reports.
Video

Video Kenya’s Capital Sees Rise in Shisha Parlors

In Kenya, the smoking of shisha, a type of flavored tobacco, is the latest craze. Patrons are flocking to shisha parlors to smoke and socialize. But the practice can be addictive and harmful, though many dabblers may not realize the dangers, according to a new review. Lenny Ruvaga has more on the story for VOA from Nairobi, Kenya.

VOA Blogs