As other states move to restrict abortions, the California Legislature is considering two bills that would increase access to abortion—despite public opinion against the move, according to LifeNews.
The first bill, AB 154, would decrease the amount of training required to perform an abortion, allowing nurse practitioners, physician assistants, and certified nurse midwives to do the procedures. The second bill, AB 980, would declassify abortion as a surgical procedure and reduce building requirements for abortion facilities.
Though California’s legislature seems to be moving in the opposite direction of states like Texas, citizens are reflecting a wider trend toward pro-life sentiments. Results of a recent poll by Sacramento-based Smith-Johnson Research, released earlier this month, reveal that California residents are, for the most part, against the bills. Of respondents to the poll, 65 percent were opposed or strongly opposed to allowing nurse practitioners and physician assistants to perform abortions. Only 20 percent favored the bill, and 10 percent strongly favored it. An even larger majority—76 percent—opposed allowing nurse midwives to perform abortions. Almost 66 percent of participants believed the law would make abortions more dangerous for women, and only 15 percent believed it would make them safer.
“In the name of solving a non-existent problem—access to abortion—this bill would endanger women’s health and reduce the quality of health care,” Ned Dolejsi, executive director of the California Catholic Conference, told LifeNews. “It’s clear that the overwhelming majority of Californians share our concerns.”
Senate Appropriations Committee hearings for the two bills are scheduled for Aug. 12, when the legislature reconvenes. AB 154 is similar to last year’s failed proposal to allow nurse practitioners to perform abortions. The California Nurses Association opposed that bill.