Twitter was abuzz Wednesday over a proposed state bill that would significantly restrict abortions in North Carolina. Follow the debate today on Twitter using the hashtags #NCGA and #HB695.
From the Raleigh News & Observer article:
A bill restricting abortions that popped up in the state Senate without public notice Tuesday evening and received swift approval would force clinics to meet expensive license requirements and make it more difficult for doctors to perform the procedures.
Under the bill, which was tacked onto another measure dealing with Islamic law, abortion clinics would have to meet license standards similar to those of ambulatory surgical centers. According to legislative staff, only one clinic in the state currently meets that standard. The state’s four Planned Parenthood clinics don’t meet it. The bill would also require doctors to be present when women take drugs that induce abortions.
The Senate approved the measure with a preliminary vote of 27-14. A final vote expected Wednesday would send the bill to the House, which has already passed some of the provisions included in the bill.
N.C. Senate Minority Leader Martin Nesbitt, who represents Asheville, speaks out against the bill in the article.
“You’re going to win this debate and feel really good about yourself because you great big gray-haired men beat up on three women,” Nesbitt said, referring to three female Democratic senators who were in the chamber. “Let’s see what you do with 10,000 of them.”
Asheville City Council Member Gordon Smith wrote on Twitter: “Evidently AVL has the only clinic in NC that would meet new women’s health restriction requirements. The only one.” (A claim Xpress is currently following up on.) He later added: “To the women of NC – #NCGA just severely restricted your health care choices, but know that Asheville is here for you.”
From a newsletter to Planned Parenthood of Asheville members by Irene Gomez, N.C. Director of Public Affairs:
Just a few hours ago at 8pm, NC Senators pushed through the worst bill that we’ve seen this session on women’s health. This maneauver was last minute–on a holiday week no less, and the aim is clear: to pass through this corrosive legislation and see Planned Parenthood doors close.
Take Action Now and urge legislative leaders to reject this extreme bill.
HB 695 was originally part of another bad bill which had nothing to do with abortion or women’s health care. Local news outlets have reported on the potential impactsof this bill, and we are extremely troubled to see this covert attack on women’s constitutional rights. We will organize, no matter what.
Join women and their supporters as we gather in Raleigh on Wednesday, July 3rd for the start of the Senate session at 9am. Wear pink/purple and meet us at 16 W. Jones Street, Raleigh. For updates, check out the Facebook event or follow PPHSNC on Twitter.
Gov. Pat McCrory has now weighed in as well. According to WRAL’s state capitol Twitter feed @NCCapitol: “Gov says H695 Abortion bill process ‘not right. Regardless of what party is in charge … process must be appropriate and thorough.”
More coverage as this develops.