Perdue vetoes abortion bill

Beverly Perdue

June 27, 2011 3:22:23 PM PDT
North Carolina Gov. Beverly Perdue has vetoed legislation that would place medical and time hurdles in front of women considering abortions. Perdue had until midnight Monday to veto the bill or let it become law without her signature.

Her spokeswoman previously linked the legislation to what she called an "extreme agenda" of the Republican-led General Assembly.

In a statement issued with her veto announcement, Perdue said: "This bill is a dangerous intrusion into the confidential relationship that exists between women and their doctors."

"Physicians must be free to advise and treat their patients based on their medical knowledge and expertise and not have their advice overridden by elected officials seeking to impose their own ideological agenda on others," she continued.

The Legislature could try to override any veto. Both the House and Senate votes on the bill were one vote shy of a potential override.

The bill would require women who want an abortion to get an ultrasound of their fetus and to wait 24 hours after receiving counseling.

Planned Parenthood is the most vocal group opposed to the new legislation. They argue that an ultra sound and informed consent is already required before a woman can have an abortion in North Carolina.

They say this new legislation goes too far.

"This puts the government in the examination room with women and their doctors where it does not belong," said Melissa Reed with Planned Parenthood. "This 24-hour delay poses a real burden on working women juggling the demands of their jobs, daycare and childcare."

Supporters of the bill say this is not intended to make abortions more difficult, but to make sure a woman understands clearly what is happening, the stage of the fetus, before an abortion is performed.

Before ending their session, lawmakers also passed legislation approving a "choose life" license plate as seen in other states.

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