I am concerned with the intent of SB60, Abortion Statistics and Reporting Requirements, which the Utah Senate passed and is now before the House. The sponsor, Sen. Margaret Dayton, R-Orem, seeks to have the state collect data on the race or ethnicity of women having abortions, demographic information not required on federal reporting forms.
During discussions on the Senate floor, Dayton refused to confirm whether the newly requested information will be voluntary. The bill needs to be amended to reflect that any information gathered is voluntary and not mandated. This bill seems to be a fishing expedition for any excuse to further restrict access to a legal procedure.
I was astounded by Dayton's reaction to questions from her Democratic colleagues. Her dismissive reaction: "Maybe it's a good thing we only have five members of the minority party because I have now answered questions from all of them; if we had any more we would have extended the discussion."
Too bad. Those five senators have the right and obligation to their constituents to ask questions about unnecessary and intrusive legislation. It's her job to provide answers about the over-reaching legislation she has proposed .