Wisconsin Gov. Scott Walker is set to sign into law new restrictions on abortion after his fellow Republicans pushed through a series of anti-abortion bills this week. Planned Parenthood predicts that one of the state’s four abortion clinics is likely to close because of the measures.
The state Assembly approved a measure Thursday that would require women seeking abortions to get an ultrasound, and that doctors performing abortions have hospital admitting privileges within 30 miles of where the procedure is performed. The bill does not require any certification for the person performing the ultrasound, and a provision that allows the state to create a list of centers providing free ultrasounds could push women toward anti-abortion crisis pregnancy centers.
The House also approved two other bills, both of which will now go to the state Senate. Those would ban sex-selective abortions, allow religious groups to avoid providing contraception in employee insurance plans, and prohibit tax dollars from being used to cover abortions in public employee health plans.
Wisconsin already requires any woman seeking an abortion to sit through an “informative” presentation and has a 24-hour waiting period.
“These bills are pushing Wisconsin women back decades in the matter of one week,” Jennifer Dye, executive director of NARAL Pro-Choice Wisconsin told msnbc. She also said abortion rights activists will not let these setbacks stop them. “Republicans think that by doing this so early in the session, people are going to forget what happened, and we’re going to make sure that voters don’t.”