NC abortion education bill heads to House floor - WJBF-TV ABC 6 Augusta-Aiken

NC abortion education bill heads to House floor

Posted: Updated:
RALEIGH, N.C. -

A North Carolina House panel endorsed a bill Tuesday requiring educators to teach that abortions are linked to later premature births, sending the measure to the full body for approval.

If passed without changes on the House floor, the bill would move on to Gov. Pat McCrory. An amended version of the bill that passed the Senate with Democratic support last month requires students to learn about other risk factors for preterm births besides having an abortion, but House Democrats pushed for additional changes.

Opponents of the bill have questioned the scientific basis for linking abortion to preterm births later in life and have called the bill an attempt to rewrite curriculum to align with conservative political ideology. Supporters say a growing body of studies supports the connection and preterm birth costs the state millions every year from health complications attributable to abortion-linked premature birth.

The bill requires those in grades seven and higher to learn about the risk factors associated with premature birth, specifically smoking, alcohol consumption, drug use, abortion and inadequate prenatal care. Infants born prematurely face greater risks of developmental impediments and death.

Sen. Warren Daniel, R-Burke and the bill's lead sponsor, has cited the conclusions of the North Carolina Child Fatality Task Force, which found in 2012 that more than 125 publications have linked abortion to premature birth. He says that report also clearly lays out the costs in human life and expenses from health complications.

"There are thousands of preterm births every year," he said Tuesday. "It adds to our infant mortality rate."

Democrats again listed major health groups that don't support the science behind linking abortion to premature births, including the World Health Organization and the American Academy of Pediatrics. Democrats took issue with telling educators which risk factors they have to teach and the bill's use of the term "cause" instead of "risk" to describe them. They unsuccessfully pressed for amendments to enact those changes.

"I can't vote for this bill because I think that it is incorrect to say you can teach about preventable causes," said Verla Insko, D-Orange. "You can teach about preventable risk factors."

Republicans said Insko was raising a semantic argument because either term implied a causal relationship. Rep. James Fulghum, R- Wake and a retired neurosurgeon, said Insko's amendment raises a "distinction without a difference."

The House committee approved the measure 13-7.

Abortion-rights groups immediately opposed the decision, saying the bill is more about politics than health education.

"The bill is not about protecting or promoting our teen's health, it's about inserting anti-choice and medically unsupported rhetoric into our classrooms," said the state chapter of the National Abortion and Reproductive Rights Action League in a statement.

  • Back To SchoolMore>>

  • 13 NC kids killed since 1999 by drivers passing school buses

    13 NC kids killed since 1999 by drivers passing school buses

    Tuesday, August 26 2014 9:06 PM EDT2014-08-27 01:06:55 GMT
    NC drivers pass stopped school buses every day, violating state laws requiring drivers to yield when a bus's stop arm is extended.
    NC drivers pass stopped school buses every day, violating state laws requiring drivers to yield when a bus's stop arm is extended.
  • Highway Patrol: Drivers passing stopped school buses is an 'epidemic'

    Highway Patrol: Drivers passing stopped school buses is an 'epidemic'

    Tuesday, August 26 2014 8:29 PM EDT2014-08-27 00:29:26 GMT
    Lt. Jeff GordonLt. Jeff Gordon
    The State Highway Patrol is focusing on school bus violators in North Carolina as the traditional school year begins.
    The State Highway Patrol is focusing on school bus violators in North Carolina as the traditional school year begins.
  • The Clueless Chick: Back to school tips

    The Clueless Chick: Back to school tips

    Tuesday, August 26 2014 8:41 AM EDT2014-08-26 12:41:47 GMT
    Back to school ideas and tips from Jennifer Durbin.Back to school ideas and tips from Jennifer Durbin.
    This is the first week of school for traditional calendar students. That means it's time to readjust your schedule to accommodate extra time to pack lunches every day.
    This is the first week of school for traditional calendar students. That means it's time to readjust your schedule to accommodate extra time to pack lunches every day.
  • PoliticsMore>>

  • Week of protests to wrap up at NC Capitol

    Week of protests to wrap up at NC Capitol

    Thursday, August 28 2014 7:13 PM EDT2014-08-28 23:13:38 GMT
    A coalition led by North Carolina's NAACP is wrapping up a week of demonstrations at the state capitol with a rally for voting rights.
    A coalition led by North Carolina's NAACP is wrapping up a week of demonstrations at the state capitol with a rally for voting rights.
  • Tillis to highlight NC teacher raises in TV ad

    Tillis to highlight NC teacher raises in TV ad

    Thursday, August 28 2014 7:11 PM EDT2014-08-28 23:11:43 GMT
    House Speaker Thom Tillis will highlight teacher pay raises approved by the North Carolina legislature this year in a television ad to first air on the eve of his first U.S. Senate debate with Democratic incumbent Kay Hagan.
    House Speaker Thom Tillis will highlight teacher pay raises approved by the North Carolina legislature this year in a television ad to first air on the eve of his first U.S. Senate debate with Democratic incumbent Kay Hagan.
  • Radio ads praise NC lawmakers for fracking votes

    Radio ads praise NC lawmakers for fracking votes

    Wednesday, August 27 2014 9:44 PM EDT2014-08-28 01:44:36 GMT
    The energy industry is thanking several North Carolina lawmakers who supported fracking legislation with radio ads in their districts as elections approach.
    The energy industry is thanking several North Carolina lawmakers who supported fracking legislation with radio ads in their districts as elections approach.
Powered by WorldNow

1336 Augusta West Parkway
Augusta, GA 30909

Telephone: 706.722.6664
Email: talkback6@wjbf.com

Can't find something?
Powered by WorldNow
All content © Copyright 2000 - 2014 Media General Communications Holdings, LLC. A Media General Company.