Governor Dayton vetoes two abortion bills

Gov. Dayton vetoed two bills this week aimed at limiting access to abortions in Minnesota. With just a week left of the 2017 Legislative Session, the Republican majority were told the bills were unconstitutional and would likely be vetoed. But the Governor’s warnings were ignored. It’s time for the divisive social issues and bills we know will be vetoed to take a back seat to the legislature getting their work done and done on time.

The first bill vetoed would have prohibited state funding for abortions except in cases to save the life of a woman or in cases of rape or incest. State law in Minnesota already prohibits the use of state funding for abortions except in cases of rape or incest, for health or therapeutic reasons, and when a woman’s life is in danger. The bill discriminated against women based on the type of insurance they have and challenged current state law that ensures women have access to reproductive health care regardless of their financial situation.

The second bill would have subjected abortion clinics to the licensure standards of the Outpatient Surgical Center Act, which essentially classifies them as small hospitals. This bill was also designed to shut down abortion providers in Minnesota. The evidence of unsafe practices within these clinics to warrant this type of heightened licensure is not present in the clinics that operate in Minnesota. (SF 704, SF 702)