Bill to tweak Utah's abortion rules goes to governor
Women who need an abortion to save their lives soon may soon no longer be required to first watch a state-mandated video and read state pamphlets on alternatives including adoption.
The House voted 72-0 Monday to pass SB71, and sent it to Gov. Gary Herbert for his signature. The bill earlier also unanimously passed the Senate on a 25-0 vote.
Sen. Wayne Harper, R-Taylorsville, sponsor of the bill, earlier told the Senate that it is a narrow exception that may affect 60 to 100 women a year. "It is the compassionate thing to do, the right thing to do."
The bill would allow avoiding the video and information when an "abortion is necessary to avert the woman's death or a serious risk of substantial and irreversible impairment of a major bodily function," or when two doctors agree that a fetus has a fatal defect.
Sen. Brian Shiozawa, R-Cottonwood Heights, a doctor, also said earlier, "The last thing we need in a life-threatening situation is to have our hands tied and make the patient feel emotionally worse to watch a mandatory video."