While we were sleeping last night, Republican lawmakers in Missouri quietly pulled a sneaky maneuver just before the stroke of midnight, stealing a victory for the GOP’s War on Women.
And — Lo and Behold! This morning, Missouri women woke up to discover that the waiting time for having an abortion had suddenly TRIPLED from an already obnoxious 24 hours to an intolerable 72 hours — a full three days.
Missouri’s Democratic Governor Jay Nixon had vetoed House Bill numbers 1307 and 1313, and State Senate Democrats mounted a filibuster to block the GOP’s attempt to override the veto.
How Missouri’s GOP rammed through their anti-abortion law.
Then, — as Courthouse News explains– the GOP resorted to a little-known tactic known as “calling the previous question” to block the filibuster that blocked the override to the veto blocking the GOP’s anti-choice legislation.
The Republican-controlled Legislature needed 109 votes in the House and 23 in the Senate for an override. The House voted 117-44 for the abortion bill, but the Senate ended debate with a vote of 21-9.
ACLU of Missouri Executive Director Jeffrey Mittman declared:
“Tonight’s vote represents the latest intrusion of politicians into a woman’s private medical decisions,. This legislation was never about helping women, but instead is a way for some politicians in Jefferson City to pursue their own political agendas. It’s shameful and it risks women’s health.”
Ozarks First reports Missouri’s House Speaker Tim Jones has been planning this since last month, shortly before the legislature’s veto session began:
“Where the Governor will not lead, this legislature, Democrats and Republicans, will continue to stand for life. When you’re deciding whether or not to bring a child into this world, waiting three days is not too much of a burden to ask when you’re making such a life-changing decision as that.”
Planned Parenthood spokeswoman: GOP’s anti-abortion law “especially cruel.”
Sure, waiting three days to ponder whether or not to have an abortion sounds totally reasonable … for an over-privileged white male who never has to worry about becoming pregnant.
But what if you’re a pregnant teenager or victim of rape and/or incest and barely managed to muster the courage and resources needed to seek an abortion in the first place?
Thanks to a series of highly restrictive laws, Missouri only has one licensed abortion clinic left in the entire state — Planned Parenthood in St. Louis. Because of this, Missouri women travel an average of 100 miles to get an abortion, according to State Director of Organizing for Planned Parenthood M’Evie Mead.
Imagine being scared, alone, and pregnant — and having to not only find a way to travel 100 miles to the one women’s health clinic in your state that can help you, but then having to find enough money to pay for three or four days in a hotel! And how do you explain being gone for three-to-four-days to your high school principal, boss, abusive husband, rapist pastor, or incestuous father?
In her statement to reporters, Mead referred to the law as “especially cruel.”
“A woman who is a survivor or rape or incest, and has a pregnancy as a result of her attack, then forcing a woman to wait that long we believe is especially cruel […] Women, we believe, would be significantly impacted by the delay. Again, having to figure out childcare, time off work, and how to accommodate having to wait three days.”
Here’s the report from Ozarks First with Jones’ defense of his fellow state Republicans’ horrific anti-abortion law.