By Dave Andrusko
The headline—” Oregon Gov. Kotek signs bills expanding reproductive rights”—and the first two sentences— “The bills that sparked the longest Oregon Senate walkout in state history were quietly signed by Gov. Tina Kotek on Thursday, officials say. The governor’s office confirmed to KOIN 6 that two bills – HB 2002 and HB 2005 – were signed into law and will receive a ceremonial signing at a later date” —speaks volumes about how radically pro-abortion Oregon Democrats have become.
The final HB 2002 was not nearly as awful as originally allowed for. For example, a legislator asked whether a ten-year-old could “make that decision [to abort] on their own?”
“There are audible gasps in the room as a nonpartisan attorney for the Oregon Legislature confirms ‘a minor of any age’ could obtain an abortion under legislation proposed by Oregon Democrats.”
“HB 2002 guarantees that Oregonians ages 15 or older can access reproductive health care, including abortion,” reports Aimee Plante for KOIN 6. “It also allows people of the same age to access care without parental permission in some cases and protects healthcare providers from out-of-state investigations and legal action.”
Why did Democrats make that concession? “[P[rompted by widespread public opposition, state Senate Republicans staged a weeks-long walkout that blocked the bill from passing,” Micaiah Bilger reported.
Senate Republican Leader Tim Knopp charged that HB 2002 was violating “parents’ sacred right to love and care for their child.”
“[This bill] allows a child of any age, without parental knowledge, to receive an abortion,” the Republican leaders said in May on Twitter. “This will increase the vulnerability of young girls to be sex-trafficked. … HB 2002B is nothing but an extreme attack on parents and children.”
After weeks of negotiations, “Democrat leaders agreed to amend the bill to keep requirements that parents/guardians be told if a child under 15 wants an abortion,” Bilger reported. “As part of the agreement, however, they also created exceptions that allows girls of any age to have abortions without their parents’ knowledge if the abortion provider believes telling the parent would result in abuse or neglect or if two providers at separate facilities believe it would not be in the child’s best interest.”
In June, Oregon Right to Life executive director Lois Anderson wrote “At the beginning of May, HB 2002 was on track to glide through the Oregon Senate without any meaningful debate, let alone amendments. Because pro-life senators walked out, courageously putting their political careers on the line, HB 2002 was reined in.”
She added, “Though the amendments do not resolve all our concerns, the changes to HB 2002 retain protections for parents and children, born and unborn, that would have been removed.”
According to Oregon Right to Life as part of the agreement, Democrats committed to keeping Senate Judicial Resolution 33 from a floor vote which would have begun the process of amending the state constitution to create a right to abortion on demand.
Back in April, there was a strong movement in favor of amending the state constitution, Amelia Templeton reported. “Planned Parenthood, ACLU Oregon and Basic Rights Oregon are campaigning for the proposed amendment, which has broad support from Democrats who control both chambers of the Oregon Legislature” .