Republicans across the country have pushed for a slew of abortion regulations that limit women’s access to health care. State lawmakers have considered measures that put up more hurdles for women seeking abortions, with the goal of ultimately preventing them from having the procedure.
Pennsylvania was one of 17 states to consider requiring women to undergo an unnecessary ultrasound before an abortion, which Gov. Tom Corbett (R) supported even though the House stopped the bill. He defended the measure by telling women “you just have to close your eyes” if they didn’t want to see the ultrasound. And in an interview with UW Election Eye, Corbett said he supported the abortion bill in the hope that it would stop women from having an abortion:
CORBETT: I think we have over 30,000 abortions a year in Pennsylvania. [...] I think adoption is a much preferable way to go. When you see that kind of number, if an ultrasound, which is not invasive at all, would convince somebody maybe to carry that baby to term and give it up for adoption and save that life, I think that’s the way to go.
Research has shown that seeing an ultrasound does not lead women to change their minds about having an abortion. Instead, it only forces women to jump through more time-consuming hoops before they can have a medical procedure.