The American Woman's Illustrated Guide to The Summer of 2013

[July 14, 2013, updated July 16] Anti-choice leadership has had legislative wins across the United States this summer. The response has included moments of levity as well as anger. Witness the summer of 2013 in pictures as well as all-too sobering links.


  1. Although Texas may have taken the media spotlight this summer, the assault on choice runs across the entire nation.
  2. When the Supreme Court handed down its decision in Roe v Wade, it made abortion legal "until the fetus is viable outside the womb, which is often around 24 weeks into pregnancy." Opponents to all abortion, which has remained steady at about 1-in-5 Americans since that decision, have focused on eliminating abortion by reducing how many facilities and doctors who can perform the procedure.
  3. In the first six months of the year, according to the Guttmacher Institute, states passed 106 measures related to reproductive health and rights. According to Rolling Stone, as of July 11, 2013, 17 states had passed 43 abortion restrictions this year. High profile bills have peaked in the past month. 
  4. Legislation designed to close clinics and make it difficult to find an abortion provider have been dubbed TRAP (Targeted Regulation of Abortion Providers) laws. In 2001, Mother Jones called them a "quiet war on abortion."
  5. Although media focus has been on Texas and North Carolina, that's not where all the summer legislative action has occurred. Read on, in (mostly - not Texas) alphabetical order.
  6. Missouri

  7. On Friday July 12, Gov. Jay Nixon (D-MO) announced that he would not veto legislation which would require "[d]octors who perform drug-induced abortions ... to be in the room to administer the initial dose." (Missouri population rank: 18th.)
  8. According to the Guttmacher Institute, 12 states have laws that require that the prescribing clinician be physically present (pdf)
    * Alabama
    * Arizona
    * Indiana
    * Kansas
    * Michigan
    * Mississippi
    * Missouri
    * North Dakota
    * Oklahoma
    * South Dakota
    * Tennessee
    * Wisconsin. 

    In some states, there are court challenges; this provision is another in the TRAP arsenal.
  9. North Carolina

  10. In North Carolina (population rank 10th), Republican leaders slipped anti-choice legislation into two unrelated bills in July. 
  11. The first volley: tacking anti-abortion legislation onto a House measure (HB 695) that would restrict the use of "foreign law" in North Carolina courts. Bills of this sort are known as anti-Sharia legislation. Not only is there no nexus, there was no warning. The GOP governor threatened a veto (he ran on a pledge not to further restrict abortion).
  12.  A few hours later, the second volley. GOP leaders inserted similar language in a Senate bill (SB 353) that the Governor supports. That bill focuses on -- wait for it -- penalties for people who cause motorcycle crashes
  13. North Carolina Governor Pat McCrory has reversed his campaign promise and now says he will sign SB 353.
  14. The response on Twitter? One of the most clever hashtags in the history of the service: #motorcyclevagina