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70 new anti-abortion laws OK'd in 22 states, second-most ever

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Paul Bedard,Washington Secrets,Abortion,Law

Some 22 states enacted 70 new provisions to target abortion last year, the second most ever, prompting an outcry from Planned Parenthood, which accused “out-of-touch Tea Party politicians” with using “every underhanded trick in the book to get these laws passed.”

A new report from the Guttmacher Institute said that the 70 provisions were second in number to the nearly 90 approved in 2011. The group said that 205 abortion restrictions were approved over the past three years, more than the 189 enacted during the previous decade.

The report also noted that many states increased access to abortion, such as California, but it was mostly critical of the more conservative states and efforts to reduce abortion.

Among the examples of “abortion restrictions” cited by the report were provisions by states to involve parents in the decision by a child to get an abortion, waiting periods, public funding and counseling.

Planned Parenthood said that the moves in the states challenge polling showing that a majority of Americans support overturning Roe v. Wade.

“The historic rise of these attacks on women’s health can be traced back to 2010, when out-of-touch Tea Party politicians picked up key seats in legislatures across the country, promising to create jobs and boost our economy — but immediately focused on ending access to safe and legal abortion and limiting women’s health care options,” said Cecile Richards, president of Planned Parenthood Action Fund.

“The majority of Americans, regardless of political party, believe that a woman should be able to make personal medical decisions without political interference — that is why politicians had to employ every underhanded trick in the book to get these laws passed, sometimes quite literally in the dark of night,” she added.

Richards pledged to campaign against anti-abortion legislators. “This year, Planned Parenthood Action Fund and Planned Parenthood Votes will be working to change the face of leadership in key states in order to ensure that a woman’s access to health care doesn’t depend on her zip code.”

Paul Bedard, The Washington Examiner's "Washington Secrets" columnist, can be contacted at pbedard@washingtonexaminer.com.