October 10, 2013

California does a 180 from Texas on abortion access

In the past, in this blog, I have identified myself as somewhere in the great middle of Americans on abortion issues, albeit at the left side of center.

In an ideal world, this is how I would break out abortion issues, per Roe's trimester structure:
1. First trimester: Unlimited access for adult women, and for minors with judicial notification. Restoration of Medicaid funding.
2. Second trimester: Moderate restrictions on access. I might allow a two-doctor's visit requirement, but no minimum time spacing between visits. I would be more likely to allow this for minors. Some restrictions on where abortions are performed.
3. Third trimester: States can bar most abortions, with exception of maternal life, notable maternal health issues, and notable maternal health issues. Incest exception for minors would still be allowed (including genetic testing to corroborate the "naming"), but the rape exception would not. (Sorry, that should be done by the end of the second trimester.)

That all said, it's very interesting to see what California is doing on first-trimester abortions.

Gov. Jerry Brown has signed into law a measure letting people other than doctors do such abortions.
The Early Access to Abortion Bill will enable trained nurse practitioners, certified nurse midwives, and physician assistants to perform first-trimester abortions by vacuum aspiration. It’s the logic of cause and effect: If you make it easier to access an abortion, earlier, and from a legitimate provider, there will be fewer desperate customers turning to unsafe providers.
Yep. It's specifically addressed to the issue of Dr. Kermit Gosnell.

And, while there's still no Medicaid funding behind it, letting these other professionals do first-trimester abortions will make abortion safe in another way by making it less expensive.

It's safe, it's now legal in California, and, per the third touchstone word, could make late-term abortions rare, or at least rarer.

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