Sen. Winder removes provision for pre-abortion 'transvaginal' sonograms in Idaho

Senate Assistant Majority Leader Chuck Winder said Monday that he and a pro-life coalition have stripped a controversial provision that required invasive ultrasounds before early-term abortions.

"We took that out," said Winder, R-Boise, shortly before the Senate State Affairs Committee met at 8 a.m. to consider introducing his bill.

But Sara Kiesler, a spokeswoman for Planned Parenthood Votes Northwest, said the measure would still require transvaginal exams, though the explicit reference to the procedure has been excised.

"By requiring an obstetric ultrasound of the method preferred by the dctor, due to the gestation at which a woman typically has an abortion, this essentially requires a transvaginal ultrasound without calling it out by name," Kiesler said Monday.

The bill would add a new requirement that an ultrasound must be performed before an abortion. Seven other states have similar provisions.

The Idaho bill allows the patient to decline to see the image.

Kerry Uhlenkott of Right to Life of Idaho presented the bill to the committee. "Because ultrasounds is a key element of informed consent, it should be required," she said.

The committee voted to introduce the bill, which also requires the state inform pregnant women about facilities that offer free ultrasounds. The panel's two Democrats opposed introduction, but Republicans backed the bill, which will return to the committee for a hearing.

Last week, a bill requiring the invasive procedure was dropped by Virginia Republicans. One Virginia lawmaker called the bill "state-mandated rape" and the provision was ridiculed by Amy Poehler on "Saturday Night Live" and Jon Stewart on his Comedy Central show.

The earlier version of Winder's draft bill would have required women early in pregnancy and seeking an abortion to undergo a transvaginal sonogram, in which a wand is inserted in the vagina to produce an image of the fetus. To perform an abdominal sonogram, a wand is rubbed over the patient's belly.

The transvaginal procedure is necessary obtain a detailed image in the first trimester of pregnancy.

Winder's original provision was intended to require that a readable image of a developing fetus be available to the patient.

Winder said his revised draft leaves the decision on whether to employ an abdominal or transvaginal sonogram to the patient and her provider.

"That'll be up to the physician and the patient as to what they want to do," Winder said, adding that he decided requiring the invasive procedure went too far.

The goal of the legislation is to reduce the number of abortions, Winder said. He said women who see ultrasound results sometimes change their minds and continue their pregnancies.

Keep Off

Wow, this is another attack on women by the Republican Party. I would like to know who was the first person who came up with the "transvaginal sonogram" requirement or a list of the people who feel this procedure is necessary. Who are these people or is it the whole Republican Party? Maybe, better yet, how about a list of the Republicans who think this procedure is not necessary? I think these Republicans should leave the "doctorin" to the Doctors!

I agree

This statement from Winder should be applied to the issue of abortion in Idaho and everywhere:

"That'll be up to the physician and the patient as to what they want to do".

I think these Republicans

I think these Republicans should leave the "doctorin" to the Doctors!

Read more here:

The current administration should also leave the "doctorin" to the Doctors! I'm sure you haven't really done your research on Obamacare. To make this a Republican thing is ignorant. And as far as an attack on women, get real! and yes I am a woman.

did you notice?

Peace, but did you notice who is pushing this bill in Idaho?

This ain't doctoring. This

This ain't doctoring. This is murder of a preborn human. left to a natural course of events, it would have been born just like your momma did with you goober!

Before a fetus is 22 to 24

Before a fetus is 22 to 24 weeks old it has no lungs or brain activity, and cannot survive on its own. That is physical limitation that wont change regardless of advances in medicine. You are welcome to believe that aborting such a non-viable fetus is murder, but it's legally and medically not, and you have no right, legal, moral or otherwise tell a woman what to do with her own body.

so you would agree...

that prohibiting elective abortions on a fetus that is viable would be okay?

that's the law, isn't it?

The vast majority of all abortions are in the first trimester, and by the time the fetus would perhaps be viable, if women are still having abortions, it's typically due to serious medical issues with either the fetus or the woman.

Any time you see the same

Any time you see the same basic right wing legislation popping up in multiple states (giving people the feeling they are fitting in with state's rights and local control) you can probably look to ALEC.


sure get upset when anyone tries to get women to think before killing their babies.I know. I know. You call it cute names like 'A woman's Choice" or 'Reproductive Rights'. Doesn't change much for the baby.


In this case it's not informed consent so much as state sanctioned rape. (They do have to insert the wand INTO her for this procedure)

And isn't forcing someone to undergo a medical procedure (and have the state pay for it) something conservatives are opposed too.

Does it

matter to the baby who pays? Ultimately, the baby pays the highest price.


Looks like we have our own version of the Taliban. Look out women, these people will prevent you from getting contraceptives and require you to be serve men as they please.


Don't worry women - a bunch of uptight white men will make your reproductive decisions for you.

can you give some examples?

I am not aware of any prominent Republican who supports laws to prohibit women from getting contraceptives. Even Santorum has specifically rejected support for such laws.

One thing I have never understood...

Why is it a double homicide when a woman pregnant with an unborn child is killed by someone (no matter how far along she is in her pregnancy), but it is okay for another woman to indiscriminately go into an abortion clinic and kill her unborn child?

Because conservatives pushed that view in an attempt to give

the fetus rights over the mother. This was another attempt to contradict the ruling of Roe v Wade that stated until a certain point in the pregnancy the fetus is not a person under the Constitution.

"No his mind is not for rent, to any god or government." Neil Peart

In most states

That depends completely on the state. Many states state that it's double homicide if the fetus was far enough along to be viable outside of the womb.

In other states the law deals more with people assaulting her BECAUSE she's pregnant. That stemmed from a fear of guys hiring someone to "rough" her up and cause an abortion.

But if she's in her first trimester it's not usually considered a double homicide. Again, it depends on how the law was written.

And I'm relatively certain most women don't indiscriminately go into an abortion clinic. Usually they have to find one and when there are more than one they have to choose. So generally they discriminate (or pick one over the others) and go to that one.

definition of homicide

California Penal Code sec. 187(a): "Murder is the unlawful killing of a human being, or a fetus, with malice aforethought." (And you didn't know that the Religious Right ran California, did you?) And then subsection b specifically exempts the killing of a fetus if done by a licensed doctor at the request of the mother.

This is not ancient history. I am aware of a case a few years back where two police officers went to prison for manslaughter because they called in a false report of a violent crime so that they would have an excuse to kick in the front door to look for drugs. Along the way, they shot a pregnant woman in the belly, causing the death of the fetus. (No drugs were found.)

Why is it murder if the mother says it's okay, but not otherwise? Because the mother owns the fetus? The similarities to the antebellum justifications for slavery are really uncomfortable, aren't they?

Turnabout for Winder and his ilk

There ought to be a law requiring that Winder (and his cronies, for that matter) must undergo a colonoscopy before being allowed to speak in public to ensure brain activity. Think he'd get the message?

They already do something similar ...

and it's called the Republican Oath. It's very similar to what the Bonobos Monkeys do to each other when accepting a new one into the tribe.


Winder contemplating killing a baby? Didn't think so.

That it was even there in the first place shows their misogynist

nature. Why can't conservatives see women as equal to them? Is it a religious thing?

"No his mind is not for rent, to any god or government." Neil Peart

Don't generalize

It's not right or fair to lump all conservatives in this category, many do see women as equals. It's no more correct than saying all liberals want to legalize all illegal immigration.


"many do see women as equals"- that's hopeful but which conservatives don't see women as equals? Maybe that's our problem.


Then why don't they speak out against legislation like this? Until they do, it's fair to lump them together.


generally view a baby (regardless of it's sex) as an innocent being that has intrinsic value as opposed to an inconvenience that can be killed and thrown in the trash. Liberals , in their dishonesty, attempt to lie and portray it as anti-woman.


I have not seen any evidence that conservatives are any different from liberals in terms of seeing "women as equal to them." The issue is that conservatives see unborn children as equal to those who have been born in the eyes of God and the law. Your statement also demonstrates that you do not understand that conservatives are often women.

Maybe you can't see the forest for the trees...

Ample evidence that conservatives, including blue-dog Dems, often vote against issues that women themselves see as being important. You should know some of them, and I'm sure we could argue the finer points of those decisions (lilly ledbetter, contractors/rape in Iraq, this issue over contraception). When Issa convened that panel and included nothing but males, that was a very telling moment.

Roe v. Wade determined that until a certain point in the pregnancy, the fetus was not a 'person' with applicable Constitutional rights, and that the woman, who is a 'person' under the Constitution, did maintain the right to a personal medical decision. I can understand that religious people see life as starting at conception, but to hold that view is to also dismiss the rights of the woman. Since fetuses at 4, 8, 12 weeks are not viable outside the womb, that view subjugates the rights of the woman to those of an unviable 'person'. What is more anti-woman than that?

"No his mind is not for rent, to any god or government." Neil Peart

Add an amendment

I wish someone would add an amendment to make the bill more gender equal. Like Virginia Sen. Janet Howell did to Virginia's crazy bill. Her amendment required a rectal exam and stress test for any man before getting a prescription for Viagra. It makes as much medical sense as this bill does.

I know our legislature wouldn't want that. They would be afraid of how many of their own heads would be discovered during the rectal exam.


LOL; you are right on!

are you suggesting that such exams might discourage men...

from killing an unborn child? That's the reason for Winder's bill. I think it is too intrusive, but you aren't impressing anyone with your misstatement of the goal.

There's your problem

Funny how

the GOP is all for limited government except when it comes to sex and reproduction.

not to mention

personal responsibility. Because women aren't capable of being personally responsible for making their own medical decisions, apparently.

Wonder what other medical procedures that the Legislature will decide to enshrine in code because they don't consider people capable of taking responsibility for their own medical decisions.

Don't forget

Drug use. They'll decide that for you too.

drug use

As will the Democrats. You will notice that few medical marijuana laws were passed by state legislatures, even where the state is as one-party Democrat as this place is one-party Republican.

Winder is Disgusting

That's all needs saying. He might as well personally check virginity status of all females getting a marriage license. Why not? Protect the men from defective goods. And these jerks don't want Sharia law. Ultra sounds are NOT recommended except for medical purposes. "…the state inform pregnant women about facilities that offer free ultrasounds" … but if it's means testing many will have to pay. So taxpayers are forced to pay for a medical procedure but we sue the Feds to force us to pay for medical insurance. These guys are ugly characters and far too stupid to be in office.

Patient's rights

I view this as a patient rights issue, first and foremost. As an RN in Boise, I feel this bill intentionally uses shame to obusfcate the patient's decision making process. It is unethical.

For those who wish to jump to the argument of "Abortion is more unethical" or "what about the fetus's rights?", that's fine for you to have that argument. But this is not about the ethics of abortion. Abortion is a legal procedure. This is about patient rights, medical professionalism, and bedside ethics.

"Informed Consent" gives the patient the right to know about the procedure to be performed, e.g., how it's performed, what medications are administered, post-procedure care, physical side effects, and the patient's prognosis. "Informed Consent" does not include any ethical, religious, or philosophical implications associated with the procedure. Viewing an ultrasound before an abortion does not produce any information relevant to an "Informed Consent". It is used only to produce feelings of shame and speculation.

Imposing shame and speculation on a patient is not medical protocol.

If legislative discussion about healthcare does not include consideration of patient rights, what kind of care can any of us expect the next time we need medical attention?

Re: Patient's rights

HT - you should testify on this issue. You provide a rational explanation for why this bill makes no sense!

Thank you! I already sent

Thank you! I already sent letters to Werk, Chew, Killen, and Otter. How do I go testify?

How to testify

The Senate State Affairs will hold a hearing soon. To check agendas go to:

The measure doesn't have a bill number yet on the Legislature's Bill Center, but should by tonight or early tomorrow:

Thanks for reading,

Dan Popkey

Re: How to testify

This info is much appreciated, Mr. Popkey. And thank *you* for reporting!

Very well said. Sadly as

Very well said. Sadly as long as this state's electorate continues to vote for these fools, responsible discourse and thinking will continue to be non-existent in the Statehouse.

Is the procedure medically necessary?

First, I think abortion is homocide.

Second, It is NOT the proper role of government to be insertinhg itself into the doctor patient relationship by mandate certain types of medical procedures.

Third, unless for some reason determined by the physician that an ultrsound of any kind is medically necessary--the unnecessary procedure should not be done.

Fourth, Lst's call a spade a spade. The "informed consent" statement (I won't grace it with the name argument) is an attempt at social engineering at its worst and an unveiled attempt at placing guilt on the woman in hopes she'll abandon the abortion--A ROLE THAT GOVERNMENT AT ANY LEVEL SHOULD AVOID. Remember, Roe v. Wade just allows the freedom to choose to abort, it doesn't mandate it.

And, as Forrest Gump was fond of saying, "That's all I got to say about that."

I think you ask the most important question

Is this medically necessary? If not, who is paying for a procedure that is not necessary and why?

Inconsistent as usual...

In committee today, they voted to print one bill that protects people from the government forcing them to provide certain medical services or treatment (contraceptives). In the very same meeting, they voted to print another bill that places a government mandate on doctors and patients to do specific procedures (ultrasound), possibly against both doctor and patient's will.

So, what is it folks? Government mandates for healthcare or no government mandates? Pick one!

Hypocrisy! It's what's for dinner...and breakfast, and lunch and

snacks. Brought to by the Idaho Republican party.

"No his mind is not for rent, to any god or government." Neil Peart

hypocrites (the Democrats)

Pretty clearly, no Democrat can honestly claim to oppose government imposing medical services on principle. They have already decided that it is the government's job to mandate that you buy health insurance, and what services must be provided. They are only arguing with the Republicans over what should be mandated.

Mandating insurance is different than mandating a procedure.

For your purpose you want to recognize them as the same, but one is between a patient and their doctor over a medical decision, the other between a buyer and a company regarding a financial decision.

Now you could go all libertarian in this argument and say the government should not mandate anything, but that would be ridiculous. The point being here that there are limits of government interference in our lives, while balancing the need for the public good. Mandated vaccinations are good for public health, mandated sonograms only for those opposed to a woman's right under the law.

(Personally, I don't like the insurance mandate. Should have gone with some type of single payer and taken the insurance companies out of the equation.)

"No his mind is not for rent, to any god or government." Neil Peart