Abortion Bill Fails To Clear Kentucky House Panel

The latest attempt to place further restrictions on women seeking abortions in Kentucky has failed. 

In early January, the Senate voted 35-6 to require ultrasounds for women seeking abortions.  But the bill has languished in the House Health and Welfare Committee, until now.  Rep. Jack Westwood told Rep. Joni Jenkins women should be given as much information as possible before getting an abortion, but there’s nothing in the bill forcing women to look at the ultrasound image.

“The nice thing about this bill is that we wrote in there language to specifically say that she does not have to,” said Westwood. 

“That she may avert her eyes?  That’s interesting language,” said Jenkins.

Derek Selznick of the ACLU of Kentucky says lawmakers should work harder to reduce the need for abortion, instead of making it more difficult and dangerous to receive one.  The informed consent bill was rejected by the committee 9-7.

By Tony McVeigh

Veteran broadcast journalist Tony McVeigh has been covering Kentucky politics since 1986, reporting for Clear Channel Communications before joining Kentucky Public Radio in 2004. His stories are aired by seven KPR affiliates, whose signals blanket the Commonwealth and parts of surrounding states. McVeigh began his broadcasting career at WRFC in Athens, Georgia, while earning a Bachelor of Arts in Journalism from the University of Georgia. He has extensive anchor/reporter experience, including stints with South Carolina Network and Georgia Radio News Service in Atlanta. In 2007 and 2008, McVeigh was named Best Radio Reporter in the Kentucky Associated Press Awards. He also picked up consecutive AP Awards for Best Political Coverage. McVeigh won four Kentucky AP Awards in 2009, six in 2010 - including Best Political Coverage and Best Hard News Feature - and three in 2011. His coverage of the 2007 Kentucky governor's race topped the Political Reporting category of the Society of Professional Journalists Green Eyeshade Awards of 2008. In 2009, McVeigh placed second in Courts and Law Reporting in the Atlanta-based competition for journalists in 11 Southern states. McVeigh is also the proud recipient of an Individual Liberty Award from the Kentucky Association of Criminal Defense Lawyers. The Brunswick, Georgia, native is a die-hard UGA football fan who enjoys photography, astronomy, live music, hiking Kentucky's Red River Gorge and exploring the state's beautiful back roads. McVeigh and his big, fat, black cat Simon, reside in Frankfort, KY.