A "national public outcry" over abortion legislation, and a controversial comment from Boise Republican Sen. Chuck Winder, helped kill a bill requiring women to undergo an ultrasound before an abortion.
That's the assessment from the Seattle-based Northwest chapter of Planned Parenthood, which this week posted an essay on the defeat of the Idaho bill.
Here's an excerpt:
"The story about our success in Idaho begins with a plan to capitalize on the national debate and dialogue over anti-choice members of the U.S. Congress and Republican presidential candidates’ extreme positions on women’s health.
"From the beginning, we knew we needed to reach out to supporters in the field, and work with the media to fan the flames of a national public outcry that bubbled over into Idaho (via Virginia). Our coordinated campaign included volunteer phone banks from October through the end of the session, and over 30,000 paid calls and several mail pieces sent to our target legislative districts. We organized over 23 events around the state, including a successful lobby day, and massive turnout at hearings, rallies, and vigils, with hundreds of supporters in attendance. The testimony at some of these hearings was so powerful that even the national media began to take notice. The country began to realize that the Idaho legislature was going too far."
Winder's debate on the Senate floor, and his argument against a exemption for victims of rape, resulted in a "media firestorm," said Planned Parenthood. "We knew there was power in pushing this story out to a broader audience, and connected with national feminist blogs who were sympathetic to the cause. We also worked with local reporters to send regular on-the-ground and timely updates."
Nothing terribly surprising in all of this, but some additional insight into the ultrasound debate. Here's a link to the full post.