The Missouri House has voted to criminalize what is often called, “revenge porn;” sharing or threatening to share private sexual images of a person without that person’s consent. Such sharing often happens by the uploading of those images to the internet.
House Bill 1558 would make such sharing of images a felony punishable by up to seven years in prison and would make threatening to share them a felony carrying up to four years in prison. The bill covers photographs, videos, digital recordings, and other depictions.
The Missouri House has voted to require the notification of both parents when a minor in Missouri seeks to have an abortion.
The House voted 113-37 on Monday to pass House Bill 1383. It would require that a parent or guardian giving consent for a minor to have an abortion notify any other custodial parent or guardian in writing before the minor gives her consent. It would not apply in an emergency or for custodial parents or guardians that have been found guilty of certain crimes, are listed on the sex offender registry, are the subject of an order of protection, have had parental rights terminated, or for whom the whereabouts are not known.
Missouri law now requires that a minor seeking an abortion and one parent or guardian of that minor give written consent before the procedure can be performed.
A Missouri House Republican is again asking to require that both parents be notified before a minor in Missouri can have an abortion.
Lake Ozark representative Rocky Miller says it’s a matter of common sense, but Democrats argue the legislation could put some young women in danger.
Missouri law requires that a minor seeking an abortion and one parent or guardian of that minor give written consent before the procedure is performed. House Bill 1383 would require that the parent or guardian giving consent notify any other custodial parent or guardian in writing before the minor gives her consent. It would not apply in an emergency or for custodial parents or guardians that have been found guilty of certain crimes, are listed on the sex offender registry, are the subject of an order of protection, have had parental rights terminated, or for whom the whereabouts are not known.
Miller first filed the proposal five years ago and related it to his own experience. His daughter at 15 became pregnant with his granddaughter, who he and his wife later raised.
In a hearing of the House Committee on Children and Families, Democrats said major medical associations have opposed Miller’s proposal each year because its requirement could put teen girls in danger. They say despite the exemptions in the notification requirement it could force the involvement of a parent who is abusive or otherwise a danger to a pregnant teen.
The Missouri House has passed a Senate bill that proposes new restrictions on abortion. The House made several changes to the bill, so it goes back to the Senate for consideration.
The bill would allow the attorney general to prosecute abortion law violations without first involving local prosecutors; repeal a St. Louis ordinance that bars discrimination in housing and employment against women who have had an abortion, use birth control, or are pregnant; and require annual, unannounced state inspections of abortion facilities, among other provisions.
Franklin said a key provision for her is language that would require that all tissue removed after an abortion is sent to a pathologist, rather than a sample as is required now. A pathologist would have to account for all tissue and note any issues. The Department of Health would follow up any inconsistencies with an investigation. It would also report annually to the legislature all information it gathers regarding fetal tissue handling.
Franklin has carried various forms of such language going back several sessions, after a series of videos emerged alleging that Planned Parenthood was selling fetal tissue after abortions.
Democrats are critical of information given out at alternatives to abortion agencies, saying it is medically inaccurate and skewed toward discouraging a woman from having an abortion. Republicans say the agencies give women information with which they can form their own decisions.
The legislature returned to Jefferson City in a special session to consider abortion legislation at the call of Governor Eric Greitens (R). Democrats used debate of SB 5 to criticize the governor for what they said was a stunt meant to help him politically.
The state House has started work on the second extraordinary session of 2017; this one called by Governor Eric Greitens (R) for the legislature to deal with issues related to abortion.
Republicans say the special session is an important chance for the state to reaffirm a commitment to protecting unborn children and making sure women receive proper care from abortion providers. Democrats say it is about attacking women’s healthcare in the face of recent court decisions.
Representative Kathy Swan (R-Cape Girardeau), who has a nursing background, is sponsoring House Bill 3, which would change the laws regarding the conditions and care at abortion providers. She said it is based in part on violations of medical procedures and protocols that have occurred at those facilities.
Swan’s bill would require facilities that provide abortions to prove that doctors performing abortions are physicians licensed in Missouri; to be subject to rules at least equal to those for ambulatory surgical centers; and be subject to unannounced on-site inspections at least once a year. HB3 would also create the misdemeanor crime of “interference with medical assistance,” for preventing or seeking changes in medical care to a patient.
Democrats including Stacey Newman (D-St. Louis) note the Supreme Court struck down a Texas law regarding regulations of abortion providers in that state, and a court has placed an injunction against a similar law in Missouri. She argues that the additional regulations Swan and others propose will also prove unconstitutional.
Representative Hannah Kelly (R-Mountain Grove) has filed House Bill 9 that she said aims to protect pregnancy resource centers and maternity homes from undue discrimination and ensure protection of women’s healthcare. She is also concerned additional abortion clinics could open in St. Louis thanks in part to a law passed by St. Louis earlier this year.
Democrats defend the St. Louis statute as preventing discrimination in housing and employment against women who are having or have had abortions, are pregnant, or use birth control. Springfield Democrat Crystal Quade said her constituents view that less as an issue of being for or against abortion, and more about local governments being able to govern.
The House has held a committee hearing Wednesday on some of its legislation dealing with these and other abortion-related issues, but has not met as a full body. Several House members say it will seek first to take up any legislation the Senate is successful in passing and debate whether pass that.
The House is anticipated to take up the Senate’s legislation next week.
Two state representatives have asked Missourians to remember the Holocaust on Yom HaShoah, the day Israel commemorates the six million Jews killed in that event.
St. Louis Democrat Stacey Newman and Ballwin Republican Shamed Dogan spoke on the House Floor on Monday, as Yom HaShoah was being observed. In Israel, the day is marked by ceremonies, the closing by law of entertainment facilities, and a two-minute moment of silence during which most people stop what they’re doing for solemn reflection. This includes motorists stopping and standing by their vehicles in the roadway.
Newman’s husband’s father, aunts, uncle, and grandmother are Holocaust survivors who escaped Nazi Germany in 1938. Many of his grandmother’s sisters, brothers-in-law, and other family members, were never accounted for.
She and Dogan, whose wife is Jewish, say they will spend the next year working together to revive the Missouri Holocaust Education and Awareness Commission Act of 2006.
The Missouri House has given initial approval to a bill that proponents say would protect alternatives to abortion agencies and their employees’ rights to assembly, religious practices, and speech.
It targets a St. Louis ordinance that the bill’s opponents say protects from discrimination women who have had abortions, use contraceptives or artificial insemination, or have become pregnant out of wedlock.