Bill that bans abortions at 20 weeks on way to Iowa Gov. Branstad

By Dave Andrusko

Iowa state Sen. Mark Costello

Iowa state Sen. Mark Costello

Pro-life Iowa Gov. Terry Branstad is expected to sign Senate File 471 a measure that both bans most abortions at and after 20 weeks. The bill allows exceptions if the abortionist determines it is necessary to preserve the life or health of the mother.

The bill requires a three-day waiting period for abortion-minded women. Iowa would join Louisiana, Missouri, North Carolina, Oklahoma, South Dakota, and Utah in having a three-day waiting period.

In addition the bill requires that an ultrasound that shows the unborn child’s age be provided.

Moreover, Senate File 471 will “allow women to pursue civil cases against providers who perform illegal abortions,” William Petroski of the Des Moines Register reported. “It also allows physicians to be disciplined by the Iowa Board of Medicine if they’re found to be in violation of the law.”

After what newspapers described as “heated debate,” the Iowa Senate voted 30-20 yesterday in favor of the bill. All Republicans and one Independent voted for Senate File 471, all Democrats voted against the bill. According to Petroski

Sen. Mark Costello, R-Imogene, a father of five children who was the bill’s floor manager, told of placing his hand on his wife’s stomach when she was five months pregnant and how could feel the baby kicking.

“At 20 weeks, the baby is fully formed and developed,” Costello said.

Democrats passionately disagreed, saying (as did state Sen. Pam Jochum), “This is not a decision that women willy-nilly make, or on an impulse. ”

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