Lawmaker wants father’s approval before women can get abortions

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Missouri State Rep. Rick Brattin (Photo: RickBrattin.org)
Missouri State Rep. Rick Brattin (Photo: RickBrattin.org)

JEFFERSON CITY, Mo. — A lawmaker in Missouri is proposing a law that would require a pregnant woman to get permission from the father before having an abortion.

State Rep. Rick Brattin, from a district outside Kansas City, introduced the bill, according to WDAF-TV.

“No abortion shall be performed or induced unless and until the father of the unborn child provides written, notarized consent to the abortion,” the law said.

The bill does have exception for “legitimate rape” and incest. Brattin told Mother Jones, “legitimate rape” would have to be proven.

“Just like any rape, you have to report it, and you have to prove it,” Brattin told the website.

“I’m just saying if there was a legitimate rape, you’re going to make a police report, just as if you were robbed,” Brattin says. “That’s just common sense.”

The bill does not have any provisions establishing standards for proving rape.

According to the Missouri House of Representatives website, the bill is not currently on the House calendar and no hearings on it have been scheduled.

There is only one abortion clinic in Missouri, in St. Louis. The Republican controlled legislature has recently added restrictions to abortion in that state including requiring women wanting an abortion to wait 72 hours between initial consultation and the procedure.

Even if the bill passed, it would face an uncertain future because of a 1992 Supreme Court ruling in Casey v. Planned Parenthood that struck down a requirement that a woman inform her husband if she has an abortion.

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