Legislative Session

Mar 13, 2014 6:59 PM by Akeam Ashford

Lawmakers To Debate Controversial Abortion Bills

Only four days into the 2014 legislative session, lawmakers are already discussing controversial topics.

At the fore: Abortion and the possibility of more restrictive language in abortion laws.

According to Louisiana Right To Life liason Sara-Mary Toce, three Louisiana lawmakers hope further legislation will end all abortion practices in the state.

"We hope to see the end of it, and we can definitely say Louisiana is constantly fighting it and leading the nation in pro-life," Toce said.

Current law prohibits the use of public money for abortion. State Representative Lance Harris, R-Alexandria, introduced House Bill 590, which would allow citizens to vote on whether this law should become part of the state's constitution.

In response, Planned Parenthood of Louisiana says, "Governor Jindal and some politicians are ignoring this health care crisis and instead chose to score political points by introducing bills that limit a woman's access to safe, legal abortions."

State Representative Katrina Jackson, D-Monroe, also introduced House Bill 388, which would require doctors to renew their licenses, and have their clinics inspected more often.

"I believe what Representative Jackson wants to do is just put common sense laws back into effect. If these doctors want to practice abortions, we just want them to be licensed and maintain their license," Toce added.

State Representative Frank Hoffman, R-West Monroe, introduced House Bill 305. The bill would keep abortion material and information out of public and charter schools.

Planned Parenthood calls these types of bills targeted regulations of abortion providers. Pro-Lifers feel differently.

"We're very hopeful that it's going to end, or that it's going to be held to such a higher standard that the practice of it will be limited all together," Toce said.

All three bills currently sit in the Health and Welfare committee.

The last day of session is June 2.



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