From the Office of State Senator Dan Patrick

For Immediate Release
November 10, 2008

Contact: Logan Spence (512) 463-0107
Kathi Seay (512) 463-0646

Important legislation enjoys broad and united support

AUSTIN - This morning, Senator Dan Patrick (R-Houston) and Representative Frank Corte (R-San Antonio) filed legislation to ensure that women are better informed about the decision to obtain an abortion.

The legislation will require abortion providers to give a patient an ultrasound of her child and an explanation of the child's current state of development before the abortion procedure. However, the patient is not required to view the ultrasound against her will or in the case of medical emergencies.

"Passing this bill is a high priority for me this session because women seeking abortions deserve to be fully informed about the consequences of this procedure," stated Representative Corte.

The bill is strongly supported by several pro-life organizations. "Including the ultrasound as part of informed consent for women undergoing abortion is a matter of medical consumer protection to further safeguard the health of women," said Elizabeth Graham, director of Texas Right to Life.

"We strongly support this bill," stated Joe Pojman, executive director of Texas Alliance for Life. "There is no other medical procedure in which women are denied such relevant information like they are during an abortion."

"Ultrasound technology is the result of extraordinary medical progress. This bill is a step forward for all pregnant women in Texas, and to deny women such information would be a terrible injustice," said Jonathan Saenz, director of legislative affairs and attorney, Free Market Foundation.

During the last legislative session, Senator Patrick pushed a similar bill through the Texas Senate with broad bipartisan support. "This bill is about enabling women to become informed patients as they make this vital decision," explained Senator Patrick. "No conscientious person can oppose this proposal."