A bill requiring women in Kentucky seeking abortions to consult with a physician in-person 24-hours before the procedure cleared on Wednesday the state Senate.
It passed 33-5.
The measure’s most vocal critic was a newly elected senator whose seat has been home to some of that chamber’s most outspoken liberal voices.
Democrat Reginald Thomas was elected last December to a seat that’s been home to Kathy Stein and Ernesto Scorsone, strong left-leaning senators, especially on the issue of abortion rights.
And when it came for Thomas to cast his vote on this bill, Thomas found himself carrying out a tradition that precedes him.
He argued that the bill amounts to lawmakers putting a “guilt trip” on women.
“This is an issue that people wrestle with. And I understand that. This is a tough issue. And people have the right to their own opinions,” Thomas says.
“I expressed my own opinion today, which I just indicated, but, after the debate’s over, I mean, nothing’s personal about this. I hope that we’ll continue to have other, healthy debates, and there’ll be healthy disagreements. That’s what statesmanship is all about.”
Supporters contend that current informed consent laws don’t do enough to inform women about certain aspects of abortion.