The New Hampshire House Judiciary Committee will meet on Tuesday, March 1, to vote on bills with topics including abortion, abortion funding, and freedom of speech. The committee will meet again March 2 and 3 if necessary to complete the votes. The full House will take up the resulting reports on March 9.
The committee’s discussion and votes are open to the public, but no public testimony will be taken during next week’s meeting or meetings. Comments on the bills may be submitted in advance by emailing the Judiciary committee (HouseJudiciaryCommittee@leg.state.nh.us).
Here are topics and bill titles, with links to bill texts.
First Amendment/freedom of speech
HB 1570, repealing the law governing access to reproductive health care facilities. This would repeal New Hampshire’s buffer zone law, which is currently tied up in federal court.
Three bills seek to limit mid- and late-term abortions: HB 1328, limiting pregnancy terminations to pregnancies of 20 weeks or less; HB 1625, relative to banning abortion after viability; and HB 1636, prohibiting abortions once an unborn child can feel pain.
HB 1399, requiring licensure of outpatient abortion clinics. From the bill: “Based on the fact that New Hampshire provides safeguards for women’s health through the licensing of hospitals, ambulatory surgical centers, walk-in care centers, birthing clinics, and other facilities providing medical services, it is the purpose of this act to further protect women’s health by the licensing of abortion clinics.”
HB 1623, prohibiting an abortion based on genetic abnormalities. The title of the measure is “nondiscrimination against unborn children with genetic abnormalities.”
HB 1684, prohibiting the use of public funds, employees, and facilities in assisting or performing abortions. This bill would make it unlawful for any public facility to be used for the purpose of performing or assisting in an abortion not necessary to save the life of the mother or for the purpose of encouraging or counseling a woman to have an abortion not necessary to save her life, and would require that any decision that an abortion is necessary to save the mother’s life shall require a second opinion from a licensed physician before the abortion is performed.
Not directly related to abortion, but something to watch in view of how “privacy” was twisted by the Supreme Court into justifying abortion on demand: CACR 22, providing that an individual’s right to live free from governmental interference is fundamental. This is a proposed amendment to the state constitution.