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Senator to introduce bill preventing Council Bluffs Clinic



This news story was published on May 10, 2011.
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Dr. Leroy Carhart might open up a clinic in Council Bluffs that would perform late-term abortions (after 20 weeks). Senator Joe Bolkcom wants to prevent Carhart from coming to Iowa. |Statement from Senator Joe Bolkcom

“I share most Iowans’ goal of preventing Dr. Carhart from moving his practice to Iowa. That’s why I’ll be introducing a new bill later this week in the Ways and Means Committee that will prevent him from coming to Iowa.

“What I won’t do is endanger a woman’s health and safety. As the House-passed bill is drafted right now, there’s no exception for life of the mother, rape, incest or fetus abnormalities that would prevent the baby from surviving after it’s born.

“Not every pregnancy ends the way a family hopes it will. A woman with a wanted pregnancy that goes terribly wrong must face an awful decision that none of us ever want to face. A Nebraska-style total ban will only make a difficult situation worse, and that’s no place for politicians to meddle.

“Republicans know this. Their version of the bill is a political ploy. In fact, according to IowaPolitics.com key supporter Senator Johnson said in an interview last week that ‘the bill makes it more dangerous for pregnant women with a medical emergency to have to wait until the last minute if the woman truly needs an abortion after 20 weeks.’

“What’s more, constitutional experts say the bill as drafted is blatantly unconstitutional. There’s not much point in passing an unconstitutional bill that will only embroil Iowa in an expensive court battle.

“We can all agree that there should be fewer abortions. I hope Senate Republicans will put politics aside and help me pass legislation that will prevent Dr. Carhart from coming to Iowa.”

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