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SB 196 & HB 1157
Politicized Enforcement of Abortion Laws

SB 196 - Sen. Koenig (R-15, St. Louis)

HB 1157 - Rep. Gregory (R-96, St. Louis)

Anti-abortion politicians are once again playing politics with reproductive health care.

Senate Bill 196 and House Bill 1157 changes the procedure for enforcement of Missouri abortion laws by granting the attorney general original jurisdiction. This would permit the attorney general to directly enforce such laws. Normally, each county's prosecutor is responsible for enforcing state laws.

Senate Bill 196 and House Bill 1157 single out abortion providers and health centers for politicized regulation. These bills single out laws targeting abortion by allowing another politician to enforce the law. SB 196 and HB 1157 are yet another example of abortion opponents playing politics with Missourians' constitutional right to safe, legal abortion.

Senate Bill 196 and House Bill 1157 are unnecessary. Currently, the prosecutor in each county is responsible for enforcing most state laws. There is no reason to change this and let a Jefferson City politician usurp a local county prosecutor’s judgment.

Senate Bill 196 and House Bill 1157 are more of the same. Year after year, anti-abortion politicians put forth numerous bills to restrict access to safe, legal abortion in one way or another. Missouri has more than 30 laws and regulations regarding abortion on the books, including many medically unnecessary regulations. Enough is enough.

Missourians are tired of legislators playing political games with reproductive health care. Priorities matter. Instead of providing another avenue for an anti-abortion politician to grandstand, lawmakers ought to focus on improving health care for all Missourians by expanding Medicaid to cover 300,000 currently-uninsured individuals, increasing access to birth control, and supporting working families.

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