The Kansas Senate has approved a measure that would outlaw dilation and evacuation abortion procedures, usually done for second trimester abortions. In Kansas, this will affect about 8% of abortions. The bill redefines these abortions as “dismemberment” abortions.
Senate Bill 95 easily passed the Kansas Senate Friday with a vote of 31-9. The dismemberment section reads:
“‘Dismemberment abortion’ means, with the purpose of causing the death of an unborn child, knowingly dismembering a living unborn child and extracting such unborn child one piece at a time from the uterus through the use of clamps, grasping forceps, tongs, scissors or similar instruments that, through the convergence of two rigid levers, slice, crush or grasp a portion of the unborn child’s body in order to cut or rip it off.”
While graphic, this language adequately described what the dilation and evacuation abortion does. The American Pregnancy Association defines the dilation and evacuation abortion this way:
“A numbing medication will be used on the cervix. A shot may be given before the procedure begins to ensure fetal demise has occurred. Then a cannula ( long tube) is inserted to begin removing tissue away from the lining. Then using a curette ( surgical instrument shaped like a scoop or spoon), the lining is scraped to remove any residuals. If needed, forceps may be used to remove larger parts. The last step is usually a final suctioning to make sure the contents are completely removed.”
In Kansas, Senate Majority Leader Terry Bruce told the Wichita Eagle, “It is unimaginable how such a procedure could be utilized by a medical practitioner.” However, not everyone sees this procedure as unimaginable. According to one Democrat, banning dismemberment abortion subjects a woman to “slavery.” Senator David Haley (D- Kansas City) said:
“In my mind, it is the worst form of modern-day slavery to mandate to an adult woman what she can or cannot do with her own mind or her own body.”
Despite Haley’s attitude that killing a baby is better than a woman carrying it to term, the measure is likely to pass. The next stop for the bill is the Kansas House, also dominated by pro-lifers. Governor Sam Brownback, who has never vetoed a pro-life bill, has also promised he would sign this one.