2 of Belknap County's 3 female reps only local dissenters as women's 'right to know' about aboriton act passes House

  • Published in Local News

CONCORD  — Two of the three women were the lone dissenters among the 18 state representatives from Belknap County — all Republicans — when the New Hampshire House of Representatives adopted an amended version of House Bill 1659 — the so-called "the women's right to know" act — yesterday.

The bill would require physicians to provide information about alternatives to abortion, the gestational development of the fetus and  methods of ...

CONCORD  — Two of the three women were the lone dissenters among the 18 state representatives from Belknap County — all Republicans — when the New Hampshire House of Representatives adopted an amended version of House Bill 1659 — the so-called "the women's right to know" act — yesterday.

The bill would require physicians to provide information about alternatives to abortion, the gestational development of the fetus and  methods of abortion along with their immediate and long-term medical and psychological risks.

The bill passed the House earlier this month by a vote of 189 to 151, but was tabled and referred to the Criminal Justice Committee when some lawmakers balked at learning that a physician could be sentenced to 15 years in prison for violating it.  At the same time, some of the information the bill required physicians to provide that was found to be false or intimidating was removed.

The amended bill, with civil but not out criminal penalties, carried the House yesterday, 185 to 138. 

Representatives Elaine Swinford of Barnstead and Alida Millham of Gilford voted against the bill for the second time. Colette Worsman, the third woman in the county delegation, who voted in favor of the bill when it first came to floor, did not vote yesterday.

Representatives Don Flanders of Laconia, Jeffrey St. Cyr of Alton and and Jim Pilliod of Belmont, who voted against the original bill voted in favor of the amended bill. They were joined by Representatives Harry Accornero and Frank Tilton of Laconia, Peter Bolster and Robert Malone of Alton, Guy Comtois of Barnstead, Dave Russell of Gilmanton, Bob Greemore of Meredith,  Dennis Fields of Sanbornton, voted in favor of the bill.

Representatives Bob Kingsbury and Bob Luther of Laconia, Tyler Simpson of New Hampton and Bill Tobin of Sanbornton, all of whom voted for the bill when it was first presented, did not vote yesterday.