Media

CORRECTION REQUESTED: Associated Press gives false description of ultrasound bill

The Associated Press reporting on Virginia governor Bob McDonnell’s signing of an ultrasound before abortion requirement, stated:

The measure initially had sought to mandate a vaginally invasive form of an ultrasound, triggering a national uproar that resounded across political talk shows and TV comedy shows. A target of national political columnists, the original measure also was lampooned on “Saturday Night Live” and “The Daily Show with Jon Stewart.”

At issue in the measure promoted by anti-abortion lawmakers was an initial proposal requiring women seeking an abortion to undergo a transvaginal sonogram, in which a wand is inserted in the vagina to yield an image of the fetus. The procedure differs from an abdominal sonogram, in which a wand is rubbed over a woman’s belly.

Soon after the uproar, McDonnell had his party remove the requirement for an invasive exam through an amendment.

 

ERROR #1: “The measure initially had sought to mandate a vaginally invasive form of an ultrasound”

THE TRUTH: The initial bill made no mention about any particular method of ultrasound required. While later revisions of the bill were specifically amended for clarity to state that transvaginal ultrasounds were not required, that doesn’t mean that before the later amendments that tranvaginal ultrasound were required – they were not. Furthermore it was “Saturday Night Live” and “The Daily Show with Jon Stewart” that created skits based on this false information about the bill which added to the confused reporting. You can view the original ultrasound-before-abortion bill filed January 11, 2012 here and verify for yourself that it does not mandate a transvaginal ultrasound. I respectfully request that the Associated Press correct this error.

 

ERROR #2: “an initial proposal requiring women seeking an abortion to undergo a transvaginal sonogram, in which a wand is inserted in the vagina to yield an image of the fetus”

THE TRUTH: See error #1.

 

ERROR #3: “McDonnell had his party remove the requirement for an invasive exam through an amendment”

THE TRUTH: McDonnell requested the bill be amended for clarity that transvaginal ultrasounds were not required to combat the fear-mongering created by abortion advocates and their media allies on shows like “Saturday Night Live” and “The Daily Show with Jon Stewart.” The amendment was not an admission that the initial bill required transvaginal ultrasounds but rather an explicit clarification to combat the lies being told about what the bill required.

 

Ultrasounds are standard practice before abortions to determinate the age of the human fetus. Without proper knowledge of fetal age, an abortionist may use an ineffective termination procedure. Commentary magazine reported that top U.S abortion provider Planned Parenthood considers a pre-abortion ultrasound as “the medical standard”:

“That’s just the medical standard,” said Adrienne Schreiber, an official at Planned Parenthood’s Washington, D.C., regional office. “To confirm the gestational age of the pregnancy, before any procedure is done, you do an ultrasound.”

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