Update: Again, N.H. House says No to abortion statistics

The naysayers are still saying Nay. Given an opportunity to include abortion statistics in a bill regarding collection of health care data, the New Hampshire House ran in the other direction this week. The underlying bill, SB 111, came up for a hearing last month, when an employee of the executive department requesting the bill visibly blanched when a committee member proposed an amendment: adding abortion statistics to the mix.

The executive department requesting the bill was the Department of Health and Human Services. I can only imagine the Commissioner’s reaction to the SB 111 public hearing.

Have no fear, Mr. Commissioner. SB 111 was passed by the House this week without any pesky amendments.

Left unaddressed is the question of why so many representatives who think abortion is health care don’t want to include it in a health care data collection program. But I digress.

There was a roll call on the abortion-statistics amendment. The amendment failed, 135-211. Here’s the link to the roll call, with a “Nay” vote being a vote against the collection of abortion statistics. The heading on that roll call page says “SB 111 Roll Call,” but it’s a vote on the amendment, not the underlying bill.

The underlying bill passed on a voice vote, free of amendments.

I respect and thank the representatives who co-sponsored the amendment: Reps. Walt Stapleton (Sullivan County district 5), William Marsh (Carroll 8), Mark Pearson (Rockingham 34), Charles McMahon (Rockingham 7), Joseph Guthrie (Rockingham 13), Dennis Acton (Rockingham 10), Edward DeClercq (Rockingham 8), and John Fothergill (Coos 1). In addition, Rep. Bill Nelson (Carroll 5) gave an eloquent speech on the floor of the House to introduce the amendment.

Proof that showing up matters

Postscript about the bill repealing New Hampshire’s death penalty: the Governor’s veto was overridden. The margin in the House: one vote. Margin in the Senate: one vote.

At some point, another life issue bill will come up in Concord. Maybe it’ll call for care for children who survive attempted abortion. Maybe it’ll be a stats bill. Maybe it will be something promoting or preventing assisted suicide.

Whenever such legislation comes up, remember: every vote matters. With 400 House members, a legislator – or a constituent, for that matter – might figure that one absence more or less won’t make a difference.

Wrong. Showing up matters.

Maybe we need to be reminded of that now and then.

House Rejects Abortion Statistics, 2019 Edition

The New Hampshire House has rejected HB 158, an abortion statistics bill. The motion was “inexpedient to legislate” and the vote was 218-144.

Below, you’ll find a breakdown of the vote, by county. Absences are listed separately. Link to the official roll call as posted on the General Court web site is here. A “yea” vote was a vote AGAINST abortion statistics, i.e. supporting the “inexpedient to legislate” motion.

A link to each representative’s contact information is available on the General Court web site.

Voting AGAINST abortion statistics (in favor of the “inexpedient to legislate” motion)

Belknap County: David Huot (D-Laconia).

Carroll County: Anita Burroughs (D-Glen), Ed Butler (D-Hart’s Location), Edith DesMarais (D-Wolfeboro), Harrison Kanzler (D-North Conway), Jerry Knirk (D-Freedom), Susan Ticehurst (D-Tamworth), Stephen Woodcock (D-Center Conway).

Cheshire County: Michael Abbott (D-Hinsdale), Richard Ames (D-Jaffrey), Paul Berch (D-Westmoreland), John Bordenet (D-Keene), Daniel Eaton (D-Stoddard), Barry Faulkner (D-Swanzey), Donovan Fenton (D-Keene), Jennie Gomarlo (D-Swanzey), Douglas Ley (D-Jaffrey), John Mann (D-Alstead), David Meader (D-Keene), David Morrill (D-Keene), Henry Parkhurst (D-Winchester), William Pearson (D-Keene), Joe Schapiro (D-Keene), Bruce Tatro (D-Swanzey), Craig Thompson (D-Harrisville), Sparky Von Plinsky (D-Keene), Lucy Weber (D-Walpole).

Coos County: William Hatch (D-Gorham), Larry Laflamme (D-Berlin), Wayne Moynihan (D-Dummer), Henry Noel (D-Berlin), Yvonne Thomas (D-Berlin), Edith Tucker (D-Randolph)

Grafton County: Richard Abel (D-West Lebanon), Joshua Adjutant (D-Ashland), Susan Almy (D-Lebanon), Polly Campion (D-Etna), Francesca Diggs (D-Rumney), Timothy Egan (D-Sugar Hill), Sallie Fellows (D-Holderness), Susan Ford (D-Easton), Elaine French (D-Littleton), Edward “Ned” Gordon (R-Bristol), Erin Hennessey (R-Littleton), Timothy Josephson (D-Canaan), Kevin Maes (D-Rumney), Linda Massimilla (D-Littleton), Mary Jane Mulligan (D-Hanover), Garrett Muscatel (D-Hanover), Richard Osborne (D-Campton), Suzanne Smith (D-Hebron), Laurel Stavis (D-West Lebanon), Jerry Stringham (D-Lincoln), George Sykes (D-Lebanon), Joyce Weston (D-Plymouth).

Hillsborough County (listed in multiple paragraphs for easier reading): Robert Backus (D-Manchester), Chris Balch (D-Wilton), Benjamin Baroody (D-Manchester), Jane Beaulieu (D-Manchester), Paul Bergeron (D-Nashua), Jennifer Bernet (D-Wilton), William Bordy (D-Nashua), James Bosman (D-Francestown), Donald Bouchard (D-Manchester), Amanda Bouldin (D-Manchester), Jacqueline Chretien (D-Manchester), Skip Cleaver (D-Nashua), Bruce Cohen (D-Nashua), Erika Connors (D-Manchester), Patricia Cornell (D-Manchester), David Cote (D-Nashua).

Also: David Danielson (R-Bedford), Paul Dargie (D-Milford), Fred Davis (D-Nashua), Kathy Desjardin (D-Manchester), Linda DiSilvestro (D-Manchester), Sherry Dutzy (D-Nashua), Manny Espitia (D-Nashua), Mary Freitas (D-Manchester), Jeffrey Goley (D-Manchester), John Graham (R-Bedford), Willis Griffith (D-Manchester), Brett Hall (D-Brookline), Linda Harriott-Gathright (D-Nashua), Mary Heath (D-Manchester), Christopher Herbert (D-Manchester), Greg Indruk (D-Nashua), Martin Jack (D-Nashua), Jean Jeudy (D-Manchester), Mark King (D-Nashua), Patricia Klee (D-Nashua), Nicole Klein-Knight (D-Manchester).

Also: Diane Langley (D-Manchester), Peter Leishman (D-Peterborough), Patrick Long (D-Manchester), Latha Mangipudi (D-Nashua), Joelle Martin (D-Milford), Kat McGhee (D-Hollis), Donna Mombourquette (D-New Boston), Sue Mullen (D-Bedford), Nancy Murphy (D-Merrimack), Ray Newman (D-Nashua), Sue Newman (D-Nashua), Frances Nutter-Upham (D-Nashua), Alison Nutting-Wong (D-Nashua), Michael O’Brien (D-Nashua), Russell Ober (R-Hudson), Michael Pederson (D-Nashua), Peter Petrigno (D-Milford), Daniel Pickering (D-Hancock), Israel Piedra (D-Manchester), Marjorie Porter (D-Hillsboro), Mark Proulx (R-Manchester), Andrew Prout (R-Hudson).

Also: Joshua Query (D-Manchester), Julie Radhakrishnan (D-Amherst), Cole Riel (D-Goffstown), Rosemarie Rung (D-Merrimack), Janice Schmidt (D-Nashua), Barbara Shaw (D-Manchester), Timothy Smith (D-Manchester), Kendall Snow (D-Manchester), Catherine Sofikitis (D-Nashua), Michelle St. John (D-Hollis), Kathryn Stack (D-Merrimack), Deb Stevens (D-Nashua), Laura Telerski (D-Nashua), Wendy Thomas (D-Merrimack), Dan Toomey (D-Nashua), Suzanne Vail (D-Nashua), Constance Van Houten (D-Manchester), Ivy Vann (D-Peterborough), Matt Wilhelm (D-Manchester), Kermit Williams (D-Wilton), David Woodbury (D-New Boston).

Merrimack County: Christy Bartlett (D-Concord), Ryan Buchanan (D-Concord), Clyde Carson (D-Warner), Karen Ebel (D-New London), Samantha Fox (D-Bow), Joyce Fulweiler (D-Northfield), David Karrick (D-Warner), Connie Lane (D-Concord), David Luneau (D-Hopkinton), James MacKay (D-Concord), Howard Moffett (D-Canterbury), Beth Richards (D-Concord), Beth Rodd (D-Bradford), Katherine Rogers (D-Concord), George Saunderson (D-Loudon), Thomas Schamberg (D-Wilmot), Dianne Schuett (D-Pembroke), Kristina Schultz (D-Concord), Timothy Soucy (D-Concord), Alan Turcotte (D-Allenstown), Mary Jane Wallner (D-Concord), Mary Beth Walz (D-Bow), Safiya Wazir (D-Concord), Kenneth Wells (D-Andover), Dan Wolf (R-Newbury), Gary Woods (D-Bow).

Rockingham County: Debra Altschiller (D-Stratham), Lisa Bunker (D-Exeter), Patricia Bushway (D-Hampton), Michael Cahill (D-Newmarket), Jacqueline Cali-Pitts (D-Portsmouth), David Coursin (D-Northwood), Renny Cushing (D-Hampton), Charlotte DiLorenzo (D-Newmarket), Michael Edgar (D-Hampton), Mary Eisner (D-Derry), Julie Gilman (D-Exeter), Gaby Grossman (D-Exeter), Jaci Grote (D-Rye), Tamara Le (D-North Hampton), Tom Loughman (D-Hampton), Patricia Lovejoy (D-Stratham), Dennis Malloy (D-Greenland), Rebecca McBeath (D-Portsmouth), Liz McConnell (D-Brentwood), Betsy McKinney (R-Londonderry), David Meuse (D-Portsmouth), Kate Murray (D-New Castle), Ellen Read (D-Newmarket), Peter Somssich (D-Portsmouth), Mark Vallone (D-Epping), Gerald Ward (D-Portsmouth), Josh Yokela (R-Fremont).

Strafford County: Peter Bixby (D-Dover), Gerri Cannon (D-Somersworth), Wendy Chase (D-Rollinsford), Casey Conley (D-Dover), Donna Ellis (D-Rochester), Kristina Fargo (D-Dover), Timothy Fontneau (D-Rochester), Amanda Gourgue (D-Lee), Chuck Grassie (D-Rochester), Timothy Horrigan (D-Durham), Sandra Keans (D-Rochester), Cam Kenney (D-Durham), Cassandra Levesque (D-Barrington), Linn Opderbecke (D-Dover), Cecilia Rich (D-Somersworth), Jeffrey Salloway (D-Lee), Catt Sandler (D-Somersworth), Peter Schmidt (D-Dover), Marjorie Smith (D-Durham), Judith Spang (D-Durham), Matthew Towne (D-Barrington), Susan Treleaven (D-Dover), Kenneth Vincent (D-Somersworth), Janet Wall (D-Madbury).

Sullivan County: John Cloutier (D-Claremont), Gary Merchant (D-Claremont), Andrew O’Hearne (D-Claremont), Lee Oxenham (D-Plainfield), Brian Sullivan (D-Grantham), Linda Tanner (D-Georges Mills).

Voting FOR abortion statistics (against the “inexpedient to legislate” motion)

Belknap County: Glen Aldrich (R-Gilford), Harry Bean (R-Gilford), Barbara Comtois (R-Center Barnstead), George Feeney (R-Alton), Dennis Fields (R-Sanbornton), Raymond Howard (R-Alton), Deanna Jurius (R-Meredith), Timothy Lang (R-Sanbornton), Jonathan Mackie (R-Meredith), John Plumer (R-Belmont), Peter Spanos (R-Winnisquam), Michael Sylvia (R-Belmont), Franklin Tilton (R-Laconia).

Carroll County: Lino Avellani (R-Sanbornville), Ed Comeau (R-Brookfield), Glenn Cordelli (R-Tuftonboro), John MacDonald (R-Wolfeboro Falls), William Marsh (R-Wolfeboro), Bill Nelson (R-Brookfield).

Cheshire County: John Hunt (R-Rindge), John O’Day (R-Rindge).

Coos County: Kevin Craig (R-Lancaster), John Fothergill (R-Colebrook), Michael Furbush (R-Colebrook), Troy Merner (R-Lancaster).

Grafton County: Rick Ladd (R-Haverhill), Vincent Paul Migliore (R-Bridgewater).

Hillsborough County (listed in two paragraphs for easier reading): Joe Alexander (R-Goffstown), Richard Barry (R-Merrimack), James Belanger (R-Hollis), Ralph Boehm (R-Litchfield), Charles Burns (R-Milford), John Burt (R-Goffstown), Linda Camarota (R-Bedford), Keith Erf (R-Weare), Jim Fedolfi (R-Hillsboro), Jack Flanagan (R-Brookline), Larry Gagne (R-Manchester), Linda Gould (R-Bedford), Bob Greene (R-Hudson), Barbara Griffin (R-Goffstown), Michael Gunski (R-Goffstown).

Also: Dick Hinch (R-Merrimack), Gary Hopper (R-Weare), Bob L’Heureux (R-Merrimack), Richard Lascelles (R-Litchfield), Alicia Lekas (R-Hudson), Tony Lekas (R-Hudson), JP Marzullo (R-Deering), Mark McLean (R-Manchester), Jeanine Notter (R-Merrimack), Hershel Nunez (R-Pelham), Lynne Ober (R-Hudson), Reed Panasiti (R-Amherst), Fred Plett (R-Goffstown), Andrew Renzullo (R-Hudson), Kimberly Rice (R-Hudson), Paul Somero (R-New Ipswich), Michael Trento (R-Bedford), Jordan Ulery (R-Hudson), Mark Warden (R-Manchester), James Whittemore (R-Hudson).

Merrimack County: James Allard (R-Pittsfield), Gregory Hill (R-Northfield), Werner Horn (R-Franklin), Frank Kotowski (R-Hooksett), Richard Marple (R-Hooksett), Carol McGuire (R-Epsom), Howard Pearl (R-Loudon), Brian Seaworth (R-Pembroke), Dave Testerman (R-Franklin), Thomas Walsh (R-Hooksett), Michael Yakubovich (R-Hooksett).

Rockingham County (listed in two paragraphs for easier reading): Daryl Abbas (R-Salem), Patrick Abrami (R-Stratham), Max Abramson (R-Seabrook), Dennis Acton (R-Fremont), Al Baldasaro (R-Londonderry), Arthur Barnes (R-Salem), Alan Bershtein (R-Nottingham), Brian Chirichiello (R-Derry), Michael Costable (R-Raymond), Dan Davis (R-Kensington), Joel Desilets (R-Windham), Debra DeSimone (R-Atkinson), Tom Dolan (R-Londonderry), Fred Doucette (R-Salem), Jess Edwards (R-Auburn), Robert Elliott (R-Salem), Betty Gay (R-Salem), Dennis Green (R-Hampstead), Mary Griffin (R-Windham), Joseph Guthrie (R-Hampstead), Robert Harb (R-Plaistow), Deborah Hobson (R-East Kingston), Kathleen Hoelzel (R-Raymond), John Janigian (R-Salem), Jason Janvrin (R-Seabrook).

Also: Phyllis Katsakiores (R-Derry), Aboul Khan (R-Seabrook), David Love (R-Derry), David Lundgren (R-Londonderry), Jim Maggiore (D-North Hampton), Everett McBride (R-Salem), Charles McMahon (R-Windham), Charles Melvin (R-Newton), David Milz (R-Derry), Sean Morrison (R-Epping), John O’Connor (R-Derry), Jason Osborne (R-Auburn), Becky Owens (R-Chester), Sherman Packard (R-Londonderry), Mark Pearson (R-Hampstead), Stephen Pearson (R-Derry), Tony Piemonte (R-Sandown), John Potucek (R-Derry), Kevin Pratt (R-Raymond), Katherine Prudhomme-O’Brien (R-Derry), Terry Roy (R-Deerfield), James Spillane (R-Deerfield), John Sytek (R-Salem), Douglas Thomas (R-Londonderry), Peter Torosian (R-Atkinson), Chris True (R-Sandown), Kevin Verville (R-Deerfield), Scott Wallace (R-Danville), David Welch (R-Kingston), Kenneth Weyler (R-Kingston).

Strafford County: Steven Beaudoin (R-Rochester), Michael Harrington (R-Strafford), Peter Hayward (R-Milton), James Horgan (R-Farmington), Mac Kittredge (R-Rochester), Jody McNally (R-Rochester), Mona Perreault (R-Rochester), Abigail Rooney (R-Milton), Kurt Wuelper (R-Strafford).

Sullivan County: Judy Aron (R-South Acworth), John Callum (R-Unity), Thomas Laware (R-Charlestown), Gates Lucas (R-Sunapee), Skip Rollins (R-Newport), Steven Smith (R-Charlestown), Walter Stapleton (R-Claremont)

Absences and “Not Voting”

Excused absences for the day: Skip Berrien (D-Exeter), David Doherty (D-Pembroke), Roger Dontonville (D-Enfield), Arthur Ellison (D-Concord), William Fowler (R-Seabrook), Cathryn Harvey (D-Spofford), Peg Higgins (D-Rochester), John Klose (R-Epsom), Rebecca McWilliams (D-Concord), Timothy Merlino (R-New Ipswich), Megan Murray (D-Amherst), Mel Myler (D-Contoocook), Sharon Nordgren (D-Hanover), Roderick Pimental (D-Henniker), Dennis Ruprecht (D-Landaff), Laurie Sanborn (R-Bedford), Thomas Southworth (D-Dover), Charlie St. Clair (D-Laconia), Sandy Swinburne (D-Marlborough), Peter Varney (R-Alton), Harry Viens (R-Center Harbor), Anne Warner (D-Londonderry), James Webb (R-Derry).

“Not Voting,” no reason given: Richard Beaudoin (R-Laconia), Andrew Bouldin (D-Manchester), Thomas Buco (D-Conway), Karel Crawford (R-Center Harbor), Edward DeClercq (R-Salem), Robert Forsythe (R-Boscawen), Sherry Frost (D-Dover), Kenneth Gidge (D-Nashua), Heidi Hamer (D-Manchester), Walter Kolodziej (R-Windham), Richard Komi (D-Manchester), Norman Major (R-Plaistow), Laura Pantelakos (D-Portsmouth), Joseph Pitre (R-Farmington).

Speaker of the House Stephen Shurtleff was presiding and therefore did not cast a vote.

A Bipartisan Vote

While the vote was largely along party lines, one Democrat voted with most Republicans against killing the bill: Jim Maggiore of North Hampton.

Ten Republicans joined most Democrats in voting to kill the statistics bill: Edward “Ned” Gordon of Bristol, Erin Hennessey of Littleton, David Danielson and John Graham of Bedford, Russell Ober and Andrew Prout of Hudson, Mark Proulx of Manchester, Dan Wolf of Newbury, Betsy McKinney of Londonderry, and Josh Yokela of Fremont.

Abortions Statistics Bill Rejected By Committee

A bill to require collection of public health statistics relative to abortion will go to the New Hampshire House with an “inexpedient to legislate” (ITL) recommendation. The Health, Human Services and Elderly Affairs committee voted 12-8 along party lines to report the bill ITL.

The bill will be voted on by the full House as early as February 14. Unless the committee recommendation is overturned, New Hampshire will remain one of three states failing to report abortion data to the Centers for Disease Control.

N.H. House Health, Human Services and Elderly Affairs Committee

Committee members voting “inexpedient to legislate,” all Democrat: Reps. Polly Campion (D-Etna), Gerri Cannon (D-Somersworth), Mary Freitas (D-Manchester), Jerry Knirk (D-Freedom), James MacKay (D-Concord), Richard Osborne (D-Campton), Jeffrey Salloway (D-Lee), Joe Schapiro (D-Keene), Kendall Snow (D-Manchester), Susan Ticehurst (D-Tamworth), Lucy Weber (D-Walpole), and Gary Woods (D-Bow).

Opposing the ITL motion were eight Republicans: Reps. Dennis Acton (R-Fremont), John Fothergill (R-Colebrook), Joseph Guthrie (R-Hampstead), William Marsh (R-Wolfeboro), Charles McMahon (R-Windham), Bill Nelson (R-Brookfield), Mark Pearson (R-Hampstead), and Walter Stapleton (R-Claremont).

Rep. Osborne, speaking before the vote, told his colleagues, “All these things [New Hampshire abortion statistics] are already in the CDC.” He claimed to have found New Hampshire abortion information online. [Note: see comment below this post from one of Rep. Osborne’s colleagues, pointing out that Rep. Osborne later corrected his statement.]

Rep. Osborne’s claim is at variance with the latest Abortion Surveillance report from the Centers for Disease Control. From that report:

  • “This report summarizes abortion data for 2015 that were provided voluntarily to CDC by the central health agencies of 49 reporting areas (the District of Columbia [DC]; New York City; and 47 states, [excluding California, Maryland, and New Hampshire]).” [page 2, emphasis added]
  • Page 5, “U.S. Totals,” emphasis added: “Among the 49 reporting areas that provided data for 2015, a total of 638,169 abortions were reported. All 49 of these areas provided data every year during 2006–2015. Excludes California, Maryland, and New Hampshire.”

N.H. House to Vote on Buffer Zone Repeal January 31

The New Hampshire House is expected to vote on HB 124, the buffer zone repeal bill, at its January 31 session. The session will be live-streamed via the General Court web site.

The House Judiciary committee voted 14-4 to give the bill an “inexpedient to legislate” (ITL) report. In order for the bill to pass, the full House must overturn the committee report and then vote “ought to pass” (OTP).

Contact your state representatives as soon as possible with a brief and courteous message: please vote OTP on HB 124.