January 07, 2005

Laying their cards on the table.

It's been pretty clear that the US right would start doing this now that they completely control the federal government. But this bill introduced into the Virginia state legislature is pretty extreme even by right-wing standards:

When a fetal death occurs without medical attendance, it shall be the woman's responsibility to report the death to the law-enforcement agency in the jurisdiction of which the delivery occurs within 12 hours after the delivery. A violation of this section shall be punishable as a Class 1 misdemeanor.

So not only does this bill require the reporting to the state of all abortions, it requires reporting of all miscarriages — which would obviously include those induced by 'morning-after' contraception. If there's any purpose to this bill other than restricting a woman's right to decide whether and when to carry a pregnancy to term, that purpose totally escapes us.

The bill was introduced into the Virginia House by John Cosgrove, who represents a district in the southeastern part of the state. The full text of the bill is here.

The website of Democracy for Virginia has much more information on the bill, including an excellent list of things people in Virginia can do to try to keep this bill from being approved by the legislature.

Yes, this is only a piece of proposed legislation. And, if passed, it would affect only women in a single state. But if Cosgrove's miscarriage-reporting bill becomes law in Virginia, you can bet something similar will be coming to your state legislature soon after.

Posted by Magpie at January 7, 2005 08:55 AM | US Politics | Technorati links |

Holy S**t, Batman! You're right, Magpie. It will spread like the flu.

Posted by: Babba at January 7, 2005 05:05 PM

Considering what has been happening to our country I guess this was bound to happen sooner or later. I live in Washington State, and they would never put up with this here. While my immediate reaction is to fight this, I can't help but wonder if its time to let Virginia Republicans stand up for their own rights, and to decide if the religious right is even on their side.

Posted by: CoolAqua at January 7, 2005 09:23 PM

I saw the film "Vera Drake" recently and recommend it for the abortion issue. A poignant tear jerker.

Posted by: Artie at January 8, 2005 12:58 PM