Sponsored By
An organization or individual has paid for the creation of this work but did not approve or review it.



N.D. abortion bills jump-start week

BISMARCK - On Monday, the 34th anniversary of Roe v. Wade, North Dakota lawmakers will hold hearings on four bills that would restrict or outlaw abortion.

BISMARCK - On Monday, the 34th anniversary of Roe v. Wade, North Dakota lawmakers will hold hearings on four bills that would restrict or outlaw abortion.

The hearings jump-start a week at the Legislature that also includes an evening session known as "Citizens' Night."

The abortion bills will come one after another, starting at

8 a.m. in the House Judiciary Committee.

One, House Bill 1489, makes the intentional termination of a "preborn child" a class AA felony murder at all times between the moment of fertilization and birth.


House Bill 1466 would outlaw abortion except to save the life of the mother but would only take effect if the U.S. Supreme Court were to overturn Roe v. Wade, the 1973 decision that created a constitutional right to abortion.

House Bill 1464 adds prescribing of abortion-inducing drugs to the definition of abortion and creates several new requirements about information doctors must tell women contemplating an abortion before the procedure can be performed.

The fourth, House Bill 1494, restricts use of public funds for prenatal genetic testing unless the testing is a precursor to treatment for the woman or the fetus.

The chairman of the House Judiciary Committee, Rep. Duane DeKrey, R-Pettibone, said he had not intended to schedule the bills on such a symbolic day.

"I did not know Monday was the Roe v. Wade anniversary," he said Friday in an

e-mail message.

Planned Parenthood Minnesota, North Dakota and South Dakota will have representatives at the Capitol to testify against all four bills.

Planned Parenthood lobbyist Tim Stanley said HB 1489 is "patently unconstitutional."


Citizens' Night begins with tours of the Capitol from 6 to 7 p.m., followed by a few specially selected bill hearings in committees from 7 to 7:45. The House and Senate will have floor sessions from 7:45 to 8:30.

Bills being heard in House committees include one on youth deer hunting season and deer hunting age.

The House may debate and vote on bills that evening restricting the height of motorcycle handles, and that deal with littering, starting school after Labor Day and a required North Dakota high school course.

In the Senate, an evening hearing is set on a bill that allows minors who have been drinking to be immune from prosecution if they call 911 for another minor who has been drinking and needs medical help.

Other issues this week:


Senate 2257 - Puts the state's workers compensation agency under the control of the governor instead of being governed by an independent board. 8:30 a.m. in Senate Industry, Business and Labor.

House Bill 1040 - Restricting protests at funerals gets a hearing at 9 a.m. in Senate Judiciary. The bill has already passed the House.


House Bill 1438 - School can't begin until after Labor Day. 9 a.m., House Education Committee.


House Bill 1521 - Prohibits college tuition increase, at

9 a.m., House Appropriations. Senate Bill 2260 - Requires a criminal history record check for someone seeking a name change. Hearing is 9 a.m. in Senate Judiciary.


Senate Bill 2195 - Adds cell phone text messages to the do-not-call law. 9:30 a.m., Senate Industry and Business Labor Committee.

Senate Bill 2256 - Bans registered sex offenders from school property, 9 a.m. Senate Judiciary.

House Bill 1454 - Raises the minimum wage to $6.15; on Jan. 1, 2009, raises it to $7 if employees are 19 or older. Exceptions for small business and small communities. House Industry, 8 a.m., Business and Labor.



House Bill 1329 - $250,000 for the maintenance or preservation of a cold war missile silo near Cooperstown. 8 a.m., House Government and Veterans Affairs.

House Bill 1254 - Ticketing for not wearing a seatbelt - primary offense. 10:30 a.m., House Transportation.


House Bill 1196 - Minors can't use a cell phone while driving. 10 a.m., House Transportation.

House Concurrent Resolution 3009 - Study a state-owned oil refinery. 8 a.m., House Government and Veterans Affairs.

Cole works for Forum Communications Co., which owns The Forum. She can be reached at (701) 224-0830 or forumcap@btinet.net

What To Read Next
Get Local