Six state senators in Utah, all women and from both parties, walked off the floor of the state Senate on Tuesday in protest of a bill that mandates that before getting an abortion women first receive an ultrasound that shows the mother a picture of her child and lets her listen to the fetal heartbeat.
Despite their efforts the bill passed the state Senate. It will likely be signed into law by Governor Gary Herbert.
“If you are going to take the life of a child, if you are willing to terminate that life through an abortion, it seems appropriate that you get the best information about the development, the stage of development, heart beat—we are talking about a human being,” GOP state Senator Curtis Bramble told the Deseret News.
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But the six female state senators balked at the ultrasound picture and heartbeat requirement. An ultrasound is already mandated in Utah before an abortion. But abortion clinic personnel are not required to show the mother the results. A GOP amendment was passed that would prohibit a trans-vaginal ultrasound.
“I rise in support of something that stops government from intruding on someone’s body,” said Senate Minority Whip Luz Escamilla, D-Salt Lake City.
Given that an ultrasound is already conducted in Utah before an abortion, how showing the mother a picture is “intruding” remains to be seen. Also how is it not “intruding on someone’s body” to kill an infant in the womb?
But logic did not deter the senators who opposed the bill, “The six Republican and Democratic women of the senate decided to walk out in protest. It wasn’t planned, but a spontaneous decision to put an exclamation mark on our concerns about the invasive nature of that bill,” said GOP Senator Deidre Henderson of Spanish Fork.
The actual agenda in this protest is to make sure not to further humanize the child in the womb, lest a woman reconsider having an abortion.