oh you wanted a baby with a head?

AZ Senate: Doctors Can Withhold Info That Might Make Ladies Opt For Abortion

Were you aware that the United Nations declared yesterday some sort of “International Lilith Fair/Diva Cup Festival?” We only realized this when we popped over to the Abortionplex for coffee and a quick D&C and it was closed! Bummer. Oh, well, at least we don’t have it as bad as Arizona where, oh why the hell not, legislators are moving to make expectant parenthood a fun and exciting game of Russian roulette!

Allegedly, legions of Arizonans have been filing suit because their doctors intentionally neglected to mention birth defects that the parents say would have made them opt to terminate their pregnancies. You know, medical oopsies for life. The natural response of the Arizona Senate was, unsurprisingly, to approve a measure to just blanket immunize physicians ahead of time, so that they can now pick and choose, with impunity, which devastating potential prenatal complications they would like to tell patients about.

Raw Story reports from today’s front in the War on Women:

Republican state Sen. Nancy Barto introduced the measure to protect doctors from so-called “wrongful birth” lawsuits.

Such lawsuits are sometimes filed by parents of children with disabilities who believe that doctors withheld information that could have led to the decision to have an abortion.

[...]

Opponents of the bill insist that it’s a solution in search of a problem.

“This malpractice shield is the latest in attacks on a woman’s right to access reliable, unbiased health care information and represents yet another effort by Republican legislators to interfere in doctor-patient relationship,” Care2′s Jessica Pieklo wrote. “But even worse, the law presumes that it is the state’s role to dictate what information a woman should have access to and what information she needs to be ‘protected’ from in accessing routine health care services.”

Say, you a gamblin’ man? Yeah? DUDE! Why aren’t you out in Arizona right now getting knocked up? Come for the surprise birth of your (maybe??) torso-less child, stay for the blighted electric fence-ringed deathscape! [Raw Story/Arizona Capitol Times ]

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136 comments

  1. ChernobylSoup

    Will those doctors who withhold information be on the hook for $millions in hospital care for a horribly deformed child that lives for only 3 days after its birth?

      1. C_R_Eature

        Unless it's something happening to, you know, Themselves. In that case they'd grab a Fistful of Lawyers and go all out for Blood.

    1. actor212

      You assume they'll be the ones doing the delivery.

      Remember, they *know* already. If it was me, and I was forced by law to do this, I'd be "on vacation" on my patients' due dates

    2. BerkeleyBear

      I'd hope the state legislators would be, but you know those cheap bastards aren't paying for anything.

    3. Sue4466

      No. Plus, the same people pushing this shit are the ones who don't think healthcare is a right and opposed the Affordable Care Act with every fiber of their "pro life" being. So, the state can force you to be a mother, withhold information from you to deny you the right to decide whether you can mother a child whose medical needs you cannot begin to cover, but then also tell you health insurance is a privilege. It's a nice package of hypocrisy & dickishness.

  2. Barb

    The food court at the Abortionplex has an Orange Julius now. I'm starting to think that I am having frequent abortions just to have an Orange Julius.

    1. C_R_Eature

      Where!? I hope it's not next to the Spencer's Gifts. Those Strobe lights gave me seizures last time I was there.

      1. Barb

        It's in the west side of the mall, past the Motherhood Maternity shop that is boarded up and the place that was Toys R Us for that one weekend. I'm just glad we can go somewhere to cleanse our uterus and not have to be annoyed by women with strollers.

        1. C_R_Eature

          Cool, I am so there! Do they still have the Special Placenta Mango Smoothies? A little dark rum in those and it's just Heaven.

          Good thing they kicked those shops out. All those kiddies shrieking at the sight of blood really got on my nerves when I was just trying to have a nice read.

        2. Geminisunmars

          I have such a hard time getting past the D & Cinnabon. I'd better enter through another door.

    2. MissTaken

      I like to wash down my Sbarro with a Orange Julius after I get my abortions. Makes for a lovely afternoon.

      I then treat myself to a truffle at See's, but that's our little secret!

  3. JustPixelz

    Perhaps a government-mandated ultrasound so women can see what's in the doctor's head.

    (Time for women to take their country back … back to 2009.)

  4. mavenmaven

    Why should only Republican politicians have the right to lie to everyone? Now Republican doctors can have the same fun! Oh, now you have a defective child that will need lifetime care until the day you die? Well, surprise, surprise, surprise.

  5. chascates

    You might also have cancer but your doctor wants to spare you that bad news so he told you to just eater better instead.

    Look, if all the politicians and sheriffs in Arizona lie why shouldn't everyone else?

  6. valgal2342

    Hell hath no fury like a woman scorned. Something tells me there is going to be a lot of women in the streets this summer and they aren't going to be hooking.

    1. Oblios_Cap

      I hope it's a warm summer and they are all wearing sundresses. I plan on being outside a lot!

    2. GOPCrusher

      Despite all the Democrats attempts of screwing up the 2012 elections, I think the Republiklans are setting the bar pretty high for electorial disasters.

    1. JustPixelz

      Just tell them all the cool states are seceding. Texas, Oklahoma, Kansas, Alabama, Mississippi, Utah, South Carolina. Who wouldn't want to hang out with that crowd?

  7. JustPixelz

    I'll bet Randall Terry wants to file one of those suits against his wife's OB/GYN for his born-this-way gay son. If only someone had told him before it was too late.

  8. memzilla

    My only question is which company is gonna get the contract for the state-mandated Keno Wheel Of Medical Disclosure with the "tell her / don't tell her" triangles on it.

  9. Oblios_Cap

    Thank goodness for these modern day Solons. Now expectant moms will have one less thing to worry their pretty little heads.

  10. DaR[edacted]

    "No info for you!"
    "… and don't expect any financial assistance with raising your special needs kid."

  11. Texan_Bulldog

    Yawn. Let me know when they start throwing the olds into the Grand Canyon.

    Seriously, pretty soon they're going to have to build a fence to keep sane (white, natch) Arizonans IN.

  12. boobookitteh

    I wonder what the voting record for expanding Medicaid benefits and housing budgets for children and adults with disabilities is of the Senators that voted for this.

  13. Tundra Grifter

    When a state government dictates what a medical professional can and can not tell a patient, it isn't a slippery slope.

    It's a cliff.

      1. Tundra Grifter

        Sharkey:

        Actually, I think the doctors have been discussing weed with their patients.

        The patients just can't remember the conversation.

  14. metamarcisf

    Favorite post-Breitbart comment of the week:

    "Obama hugging Bell is the same as a white person hugging Hitler "

    1. natoslug

      My grade school and high school didn't really cover much black history. Well, none, really, other than pointing out all those helpful negroes who came over to help us build stuff and pick our cotton for a while before Lincoln's failed theatre performance. That must explain why I missed all of the Bell Youth rallies and the whole extermination of Jews, Gypsies, disabled and other undesirables by Bell's army. I blame my teachers, really. If they hadn't been so intent on teaching me that gay sex was normal and that you don't have to end up pregnant if you use a pill every time you have sex, I might have learned more about this Bell guy and his curves.

    2. MadBrahms

      Would a black person hugging Hitler be ok? What about a white person hugging Bell? Is there some kind of wingnut exogamy?

  15. UnholyMoses

    As I've typed before: Arizona = West Florida.

    And their new motto: It's not the heat. It's the stupidity!

    1. comrad_darkness

      At least in Arizona it's a dry stupid.

      (stolen from some much more clever wonketteer long ago.)

  16. Jerri

    First, do no harm. Eh, unless the "harm" in question is sparing a lady the emotional trauma of carrying, planning for and delivering a baby that you knew all along wouldn't survive outside the womb more than a day. Then go ahead, bro. It's cool.

    It's too late to abort Arizona from the country, isn't it. Can we sue someone who should have warned us about this godforsaken state's potential for severe defects before it joined the Union?

  17. metamarcisf

    But the important issue here is that the Football Cardinals and Arpaio ass-licker Bill Bidwell are pretending they they actually have a shot at signing Peyton Manning.

  18. UnholyMoses

    /snark off

    When in the holy fucking hell did an ENTIRE political party decide it was smart to piss off more than half of the population?

    I know, I know — they've been trying to make government small enough to fit inside a woman's uterus ever since they lost Roe v. Wade some 50 years ago. But why now?

    What poll or geeeeeeeennius consultant went to them and said, "Hey, ya know how women like having control over their bodies? And how much they love not having doctors lie to them? How's about we push a bunch of bills that take over that control and let doctors lie with impunity? It's a sure-fire winner!"

    Between this and their hatred of Latinos and the Blahs, you gotta wonder if these fuckers are too stupid or just too blinded by ideology to see that they're digging their own electoral graves. Or maybe they do realize that and are falling back on their safety blanket of social issues.

    **shrugs**

    Whatever the hell it is, I'm glad their doing it. The Dems are too chickenshit to bury these clowns, so let them do it to themselves, I guess …

    1. freakishlywrong

      I simply cannot imagine what their echo chamber sounds like. "Blahs, welfare, abortions, mexxicuns, a-rabs, wimmen, uppity, exceptionalizms, muslins, poors, tax cuts!"

      1. UnholyMoses

        Sadly, I do know what it's like.

        A few years back, 10 of the 12 members of my dept. were all rabid wingnuts, with them blasting Rush every day. It was INSANE how they would just blindly believe and follow whatever bullshit the guy dropped.

        Not to toot my own horn or anything, but on more than one occasion I was able to take the barrage of stupid head on, handling all of them at once like some information pr0n star in an intellectual gang bang in which I was the only one who got to finish. I just devastated them repeatedly.

        To actually toot my own horn (so to speak) one of the guys (a young guy who was really nice, but had spent his life around wingnuts and, thus, had been brainwashed) began to question the others along with me once I started passing around links to actual facts and evidence.

        So at least one of them saw the light.

        The rest?

        Well, about four of 'em got fired for sucking at their jobs, and the rest left on their own, replaced by younger (and more liberal) folks, and have not exactly had much success. Apparently, the Invisible Hand they love so much has been smacking the shit out 'em.

        Oh, Karma, how I love thee …

    2. GOPCrusher

      Considering the fact that in the late 90's, the Republiklans had come to the realization that wedge issues were not the way to win elections.
      But now we have a whole new generation of wingnuts.

    3. 40 or 50 % McShineys

      My theory about what is going on here (meaning all the Republican legislation working so diligently at resurrecting the stone-age) is that they've figured out that it is win-win to push as far as they can. Because, essentially there are two "good" outcomes for their team. They may be destined for a massive defeat coming up, as the pendulum inevitably swings, yet during their time in the sun, they managed to drive the country significantly farther to the right.

      Essentially I think they're going all-in, getting as much in as they can while they still have majorities, just before the boom gets lowered. The "hopeful" result for them is this kind of legislation moves the Overton Window far enough to the right, so when the pendulum is almost assuredly swinging back, it won't be as far the other way.

      You'd think this is counter-intuitive, right? But then again, they don't seem to get banished from power for very long before America forgets why it wished them to the cornfields during the last election cycle. c.f. "Miss Me Yet?"

      It's almost like The Republicans have figured out just how to cynically manipulate the idiot farm that is America.

      1. UnholyMoses

        That's a great point about the Overton Window.

        The thing is, the right's been good about moving, but doing so subtly, lest the smarter amongst the rubes catch on to their con.

        Instead, they'd have some nutcase propose something crazy while the rest of them tut-tutted, knowing damn well what they really wanted would be sane in comparison. (See: vagina ultrasound vs. tummy one for a recent example.)

        But they're no longer farming out Teh Crazee to the back benchers and "think" tank goons — the ENTIRE FUCKING PARTY is joining in and openly supporting stuff they never would have 20 years ago.

        It's rather stunning to see, and I can only imagine that it's a response to what they see as the inevitable shift in demographics that'll put them outta business (and the rest of us out of our misery). I mean, it'd take national amnesia of epic proportions to walk back the Latino and Female Two Minutes Hate they keep putting out there.

        Wouldn't it?

        OTOH, it sure as hell would've been nice to see the left do the same thing with health care, floating the public option at least a few times.

        **sigh**

        I guess we have too many ethics or some such.

    4. valthemus

      My theory: The world conservatives see isn't the world the rest of us see. Conservatives see a world where wives always vote the way their husbands tell them to vote and, somehow, the vote an African American or Hispanic person casts doesn't count as much as the vote a white person casts. It seems silly, but they're absolutely sincere. Living in their own conservative bubble, the idea that women who need contraception are sluts seems totally reasonable and they don't understand why anyone would feel any different. The high value they place on tradition coupled with a belief that there is a religiously informed, extremely rigid baseline for "American behavior" makes things that sound nuts to the rest of us sound perfectly reasonable to them… whether you're talking about the role of government or the role of women in society.

    1. 40 or 50 % McShineys

      Yeah, they live there. Basically, they are already all defective.

      No baby born to Arizonan parents stands much of a chance of coming out "normal."

  19. JackDempsey1

    "legislators are moving to make expectant parenthood a fun and exciting game of Russian roulette!"

    I can't speak about expectant parenthood,
    but as a father of 3 under 10, *actual* parenthood is no day at the beach, either.

      1. HistoriCat

        Day's at the beach are even worse – "no, you can't run off and get in the water by yourself! Because you're two, that's why."

  20. Jerri

    I assume that this law then contains the provision that parents of children with severe disabilities will be eligible for excellent health care/nursing assistance/long-term aid to help care for their torso-baby, correct? Oh, no you say? Gotcha.

    Pro-Life, Anti-Living.

  21. joshleefolsom

    One of my Republican state representatives was complaining about requirements for bike lanes, saying it means we're going backwards. Fuckin' A, talk about going backwards!! They don't seem to know the first thing about going forwards.

  22. DonnyKerabotsos

    So when they they told us there would be death panels what they really meant was that there would be birth panels.

    1. comrad_darkness

      No, there will be death panels too. Death panels for mothers who dared get an illegal fetal prognosis. But after they give birth. Because the good lord knows, a woman who is not pregnant, is fully expendable.

  23. Blueb4sunrise

    And just the other day people were wondering whether AZ. was falling behind in the race to total dumbfuckery.

  24. MissTaken

    This sounds perfectly reasonable to me. As long as I expect my doctor to lie to me I'll know they are lying when they say I should lose weight or stop drinking and fucking so much.

    1. Chichikovovich

      Then let me be your doctor. I promise not only to lie about those things, but even to lie about being a doctor.

    2. SorosBot

      If a doctor says you're drinking fucking too much, it's time to get a new doctor; simple.

  25. arihaya

    Info That Might Make Ladies Opt For Abortion

    so it is illegal to tell ladies that their husbands/boyfriends are rabid wingnuts?

  26. prommie

    I am in favor of cloning, human cloning, growing little clones of all of us, as necessary, to provide spare parts. Perfectly matching spare parts, no anti-rejection drugs necessary, yay! The one thing I would mandate is that the DNA be jiggered so as to make the clones anancephalic, brainless. So, I suppose I would not want to start the discussion about legalizing this with the Az legislature?

  27. SkinnyNerd

    I take it this bill also allows judges to lie to jurors in death row cases to save the lives of defendants.

  28. Deportably_Jose

    Keep in mind that these are the same people mandating that doctors shove ultrasound probes in ladies' hoohaa's for no medical reason and force them to look at the images, and also require them to read medically inaccurate propaganda from a state-written script, because "patient education".

    It's important that women have all the information to make their medical decisions. Unless there's a risk they might make the wrong decision; then, us menfolk need to tell them what to think, instead, and keep those evil distracting "actual facts" from confusing their pretty little heads.

  29. Chichikovovich

    I suppose the next step will be to immunize physicians against lawsuits for withholding information that the medication a woman is taking could cause birth defects in a child were she to conceive one. Because it could violate a physician's religious conscience to tell a woman something that might induce her to use birth control.

  30. neiltheblaze

    I swear – pretty soon the misogynist Freudian animus of the Republican Party is going to take corporeal form and destroy Tokyo.

  31. BerkeleyBear

    So in the name of "informed consent" we can mandate an ultrasound a woman neither wants nor needs to make the decision about one medical procedure, but doctors shouldn't have to tell a woman the risks attendant on carrying a child to term? Geez, that's not slanted at all.

    I will say that this sort of shit is one area I almost agree with libertarians on – the fucking informed consent standards set up by the courts over a hundred years ago (tell them the information a prudent person would consider relevant in a manner they can understand) are enough 99 percent of the time. No fucking around adding extra disclosures in legalese no one understands for purely CYA reasons, no insisting people sign consents at the most emotionally charged time of their lives with no going back, no fucking slipping in an arbitration and limitation of damages clause into the consent that you have to sign to have your baby born in the hospital instead of the street, no non-medically necessary emotionally scarring "information" driven by religion instead of medicine, and no bullshit, namby-pamby out clauses because the doctor is too much of a dick to be honest about the life expectancy and needs of a kid born with their heart in their left foot and no higher brain functions.

    And I say this as the proud parent of a teenager with autism who I have no idea what would have happened to if we had known how fucking rough it was going to be but is grateful he's here, because he's pretty fucking awesome in his own way.

    1. spareme

      My high functional ausistic kiddo is pretty fucking awesome as well. Hell, he's who turned me onto the Wonkette. And, also, he's a whole hellofalot brighter and smarter than any of these moron politicians pontificating about all things that are none of their fucking business.

      I'd love to see him debate any one of them.

  32. Fare la Volpe

    Y'know, about a year ago, the Onion made a jokey joke video about how doctors can now just cold lie to women about being pregnant, and tell them it was a tumor growing in their belly until the blessed day when SURPRISE! BABY!

    I'm glad to see there's still one news source the Republicans listen to.

  33. orygoon

    They've had a law like this in Utah for many years.

    Some friends of mine had a "special" little bundle of joy just because of it. To their credit they 1) challenged the law through the courts, to no avail and also 2) are taking the best care you can imagine of their daughter.

    1. Fare la Volpe

      A friend of mine who grew up in rural Texas had a coach at his high school whose son was born with such severe mental deficiency that he reacted to everything two hours late: If someone spoke to him, he'd answer two hours later; If he put his hand on a stove, he'd pull it off two hours later. The family was a living wreck for the entirety of that poor boy's existence, because he could never be left alone, couldn't feed himself, couldn't go to the bathroom, couldn't even call for help if he fell and cut himself.

      The fact that anyone, least of all a doctor, would knowingly neglect to inform a working-class family that they were about to live through that kind of hell is absolutely unconscionable. This bill is despicable.

      1. orygoon

        I understand people who feel strongly that abortions are wrong.

        I don't understand people who feel strongly that abortions are wrong.

        Does that seem a little odd to everyone? Amicrazy?

        1. Fare la Volpe

          …Not following.

          And I'm not even suggesting that the family in my story should have aborted. What this bill does is say that doctors could have withheld information about his condition until he was born, which would give the family absolutely no time to prepare for his medical expenses, find a safer residence, find a school that could accommodate his needs, or even research the condition so they could find out what all their options were. Any other family faced with a child like that would be going in absolutely blind, and God help them if they can barely afford the maternity fees let alone all the post-natal care.

          This an absolutely sick, twisted, and disgusting piece of legislation.

          1. orygoon

            Oh, I agree completely. What I am throwing my hands up about is that while I understand my pro-life friends' (and those who would never be my friends) revulsion to abortion, I just flat-out despair of people who believe that complex, controversial issues can be completely black-and-white. Which is what you said.

            How is it that we have so many people left who think like this still? We have free education, free libraries, an astonishing information source called the Internet…and yet, when The Heir was very young and still went to a public school, in Texas, I'd go pick him up if we had after-school things to do, and I'd be behind some other mom whose car sported a bumpersticker that said "The Bible Says It. I Believe It. That Settles It." Well. You're not going to get anywhere having a discussion about a many-faceted issue with her, are you? And our country is FULL of such folks.

  34. sbj1964

    Republicans have declared war on 51% of America (Women) Just when you thought they could not raise the bar on stupid any higher.Way to go GOP.

  35. SkinnyNerd

    Not to worry ladies. This is just part of our war on terror. Those wily pesky terrorists will keep attacking us so long as we value women's rights. We are only taking away your freedoms so that the terrorists cannot. You understand right? God bless America!

    1. GOPCrusher

      It would of meant more if it was Sarah Palin saying that. She the expert on playing the victim.

  36. Generation[redacted]

    Shhhh… don't tell the mother, but her blood pressure is dangerously high and she will probably suffer a stroke before she gives birth.

  37. Redhead

    So women still have the ability to make a choice when it comes to these things, as long as they choose what the old men think they should choose? Gotcha.

    1. SorosBot

      Well of course; they're wise old men after all, and it's not like women are actually human beings with the capacity to think for themselves.

  38. SayItWithWookies

    Enshrining ignorance and deception in the name of theological dogma — these are those states' rights that the Republicans are always talking about? Well, I guess if making a few people miserable for the rest of their lives is the price of freedom, that's just the burden they have to bear.

  39. CommieLibunatic

    Off topic, but I love how the Abortionplex pictured looks exactly like the Los Angeles Convention Center.

  40. The_Trainman

    How medieval.

    I wish I could offer a counter strategy more effective than to support the Democrats who might counter with proposed legislation, but in the ping-pong game between them and the Republicans it seems like it would only be another serve in a match that never ends, and common people always lose.

  41. natoslug

    Please, please please let this be the year Dems sweep back into office at every level and actually work together to get rid of some of this bullshit. Maybe we ought to start getting more (sane) Uterus-Americans into government to help combat the bullshit that we Penis-Americans seem to insist on coming up with. I swear, 70% of my gender would be taking a major step forward if they would rise to the level of acting like complete dicks instead of whatever they're doing now.

  42. teebob2000

    I got no snark for this. This is unfuckingbelievable, even for "them." No government intrusion into people's lives. Keep your government hands away from my medical care and my doctor.

    Assholes.

  43. imissopus

    I believe Kansas has a similar bill working towards the desk of Governor Blows-A-Lot as well, and he has of course promised to sign it. That one allows doctors to withhold info about a pregnancy if they think it might induce the mother to opt for an abortion. However, if the mother DIES during childbirth, her survivors will be allowed to sue for malpractice. So silver lining, ladies!

  44. Callyson

    First, do no harm…
    …ah, fuck that. First, STFU and don't worry about it, that kid with Down's Syndrome isn't your problem…

  45. ttommyunger

    I guess I'm just old fashioned. I've always considered pussy is for licking and fucking, not legislating, but that's just me…

  46. 40 or 50 % McShineys

    You know, maybe some enterprising savvy doctors can turn this into an undercoating-style business opportunity, where you get to pay an extra $20K premium to find out this exclusive, platinum-club-membership information!

    FREE MARKET

  47. GregComlish

    It'll never happen.

    The pro-life crowd pretends to be against abortion, but they still don't want any mentally disabled children. As soon as they are faced with a difficult choice, most of them start calling for a Mulligan. Termination rates of, say, Downs Syndrome babies are so sky high as to belie the existence of any sincerely held pro-life sentiment.

    Search for "Termination rates after prenatal diagnosis of Down syndrome, spina bifida, anencephaly, and Turner and Klinefelter syndromes: a systematic literature review"

  48. Veritas78

    So the one part of Arizona that we try to keep is the Grand Canyon, right?

    Do we think that Messico will take back the rest? If not, do we just maroon it like Abkhazia? Is there a protocol for this?

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