North Carolina Abortion Legislation Signed into Law
In spite of protests, North Carolina Governor Pat McCrory signed the expected abortion bill into law late Monday, severely limiting women's access to the procedure and shutting down most of the state's clinics.
The law now requires that abortion clinics meet the same standards as outpatient surgical centers, and forces doctors to be present during the procedure. Clinics also have to have admitting privileges at hospitals in the vicinity.
It's now also illegal for publicly funded health insurance programs to pay for most abortions, and state health officials can now create their additional restrictions for clinics.
All this in spite of Governor McCroy's campaign pledge not to sign abortion legislation if elected.
The move comes in spite of a 12-hour demonstration by Planned Parenthood Monday, and plans to hold more protests Tuesday.
"We are appalled that Gov. McCrory broke his campaign promise and we will do everything in our power to let the women of North Carolina know they cannot trust him to stand up to lawmakers intent on denying women access to safe and legal abortion," said a spokeswoman for Planned Parenthood Action Fund.
Only one of North Carolina's 16 abortion clinics currently meets the requirements set out by the law. And although it's still not clear how much money it would cost to raise the standards, according to the state's Division of Health Service Regulation, surgical centers cost about $1 million more to set up.
If that sounds eerily familiar, that's because Texas recently signed similar restrictions.