Pa. House Overwhelmingly Passes Abortion Clinic Measure

By Dave Andrusko

Rep. Rick Saccone

One house down, one to go in Pennsylvania. By a lop-sided 148-43, the state House of Representatives Wednesday approved a bill that would hold abortion clinics to the same regulations that apply to freestanding ambulatory surgical center.

Michael Ciccocioppo, executive director of  the Pennsylvania Pro-Life Federation, succinctly explained the objective of House Bill 574 in a letter to the editor and the bill’s setting.

“Finally, abortion facilities are receiving some scrutiny in the wake of murder charges being filed against a Pennsylvania abortionist. It took 17 years for the state to inspect Kermit Gosnell’s West Philadelphia abortion center, where the grand jury believes hundreds of newborn babies lost their lives. As Philadelphia District Attorney Seth Williams said, there was ‘more oversight of women’s hair salons and nail salons’ than over abortion facilities in Pennsylvania.

“House Bill 574, a bill in the state House that would ensure that abortion facilities will operate under the same safety standards as ambulatory surgical facilities, is a common-sense proposal that offers at least some protection for the women who enter abortion centers. But I look forward to the day when pregnant women in Pennsylvania will realize that there is help and hope available for every unexpected pregnancy.”

Gosnell stands accused of eight counts of murder. And Gosnell was on the minds of many of the state Representatives who spoke in Harrisburg yesterday.

“Rep. Rick Saccone, R-Elizabeth Township, compared the grand jury’s descriptions of what went on in the Philadelphia clinic — where body parts, blood and other body fluids were found — to ‘horrors from medieval times,’” the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette reported.

“’Until these clinics are inspected regularly, we will never know the truth of how many Dr. Gosnells are out there,’ Mr. Saccone said. ‘We need to force those clinics out of the darkness and into the light.’”

However the state Senate has its own bill which is schedule for a May 23 vote. “It would require annual unannounced inspections of clinics and create a hotline for complaints,” the Philadelphia Inquirer reported, “but would not require facility upgrades.”

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