Monday, August 15, 2011

Abortion advocates weren't expecting this much prolife legislation

The Christian Science Monitor has a lengthy article on American United for Life's president Charmaine Yoest, the prolife movement and prolife legislation. The article includes some revealing quotes from abortion advocates who weren't expecting as much prolife legislation to pass this year.

Yoest, the president and chief executive officer of Americans United for Life, a group that offers 39 pieces of model legislation for state lawmakers and advocates, is one of the key actors pushing a wave of highly restrictive – the other side would say dangerous and illegal – initiatives limiting access to abortion. AUL's goal is to eat away at the underpinnings of the protections provided by Roe v. Wade – the landmark United States Supreme Court decision that extended the right to privacy to a woman's decision to have an abortion – not necessarily to challenge it outright. At least not yet.

So far this year, AUL and other like-minded groups have caught their adversaries flat-footed; some 22 states have enacted a record 86 new measures in 2011, according to the Guttmacher Institute, which studies sexual and reproductive health and supports abortion rights.

Just two years after the election of a pro-abortion rights Democratic president, it appears the antiabortion movement has been reborn.

"We were expecting a bad year – we weren't expecting this bad of a year," says Elizabeth Nash, a Guttmacher public policy associate.