Abortion in Vermont

Bill S. 315, An Act Relating to Repealing the Unconstitutional Statutes Relating to Abortion was signed into law today at Planned Parenthood’s headquarters in Burlington.

All S. 315 does is remove the old and unenforceable abortion provisions enacted in 1846 from Vermont Statutes. The legislation will have no effect on the current legal status of abortion in Vermont.  In Vermont, it is legal to perform an abortion at any point throughout the entire nine months of pregnancy for any reason.  Planned Parenthood of Vermont is the largest provider of abortions in the State, performing up to 90% of the approximately 1,300 abortions done annually. The organization makes extensive use of non-physicians (nurse practitioners, nurse mid-wives, etc.) to perform abortions, both surgical and chemical, on their premises.  Planned Parenthood’s Action Fund was recently fined $30,000 for violating campaign finance laws in their effort to defeat Brian Dubie in the 2010 election cycle. Planned Parenthood of Vermont is the sole recipient of $1.5 million in Federal Title X grants annually and also receives $300,000 from VT’s General Fund each year.

Current Status of Abortion in Vermont

  • There is no law limiting how late in pregnancy an abortion may be performed.
  • No law requiring abortion clinics to notify at least one parent of a minor before performing an abortion, surgical or chemical.
  • No law requiring that the abortions are performed by a medical doctor. Non-physicians routinely perform abortions in Planned Parenthood’s Vermont clinics.
  • No anesthesia for the unborn baby is offered, or required to be offered, no matter how late in pregnancy an abortion is performed.
  • No law requiring that alternatives to abortion be discussed before an abortion is performed.
  • No law requiring that abortions be prohibited after an unborn child can feel pain (approximately 20 weeks gestation).
  • No law that requires abortion clinics to be licensed, regulated, or required to maintain minimum health and safety standards.

Current Status of Unborn Children in Vermont

  • No law in Vermont recognizes the humanity of an unborn child in Vermont even though science and technology indisputably demonstrate that fact.  While 38 states have enacted Fetal Homicide legislation to hold criminals who cause the death of an unborn child accountable, Vermont has not done so.  There have been several recent cases involving the father of an unborn baby who demands that his girlfriend have an abortion, and despite her refusal, went on to cause the death of the unborn baby either through physical abuse or by adding abortion drugs to her food or drink.* Similarly, a drunk or otherwise impaired driver who causes an accident that results in pregnancy loss cannot be prosecuted for the death of an unborn child in Vermont unless the accident occurred on federal property (see www.benningtonbabies.com).

*John Andrew Welden, of Florida, is heading to prison for 14 years after he tricked his pregnant girlfriend, Remee Lee, into taking a drug, misoprostol, to cause an abortion. Lee was six weeks pregnant and refused to have an abortion as Welden had demanded. Authorities say that 28-year-old John Andrew Welden did not want to be a father, so when his girlfriend, Remee Jo Lee, got pregnant, Welden faked a prescription for an abortion pill, switched a label so the medication appeared to be a common antibiotic, and gave her the drug. The drug did its job. The unborn baby died.