Another (Small) Victory: Alabama Backs Off State-Sanctioned Rape

This just in:

A lawmaker in Alabama is backing off a provision that would have required women in his state to undergo a transvaginal ultrasound before getting an abortion — similar to a much-maligned measure in Virginia that was also eventually scrapped.

State Sen. Clay Scofield (R) submitted a bill last week that would have required a woman to undergo an ultrasound before she could get an abortion. The bill would have mandated that the doctor decide whether to perform a transabdominal or transvaginal ultrasound, “whichever would display the embryo or fetus more clearly.”

“We’re not requiring it unless the woman wants to get an abortion. If she doesn’t want to get an abortion, she doesn’t have to do it,” Scofield said last week.


The bill passed out of Alabama’s Senate Health Committee by a 4-1 vote last Wednesday, but on Monday Scofield indicated that he is having second thoughts. Scofield said that he’s planning to amend the bill so that the woman can choose which type of ultrasound she prefers — though she would still be required to receive an ultrasound before getting an abortion.

”I am committed to amending this (bill) to specify that it is the woman’s choice which method of ultrasound that she would be more comfortable with,” Scofield said.

Well gee whiz, Clay. You mean you’re not going to require an ultrasound before getting an abortion if the woman doesn’t want to get an abortion?

You can’t buy logic like that, people.

Also, part of the reason that woman are grabbing their rusty pitchforks™ and poking them in the hindquarters of those who support these bills is that “jelly on the belly” ultrasounds don’t result in a clear image:

According to the Guttmacher Institute, 88 percent of abortions occur during the first 12 weeks of pregnancy. Because the fetus is so small at this stage, traditional ultrasounds performed through the abdominal wall, “jelly on the belly,” often cannot produce a clear image. Therefore, a transvaginal probe is most often necessary, especially up to 10 weeks to 12 weeks of pregnancy. The probe is inserted into the vagina, sending sound waves to reflect off body structures to produce an image of the fetus. Under this new law, a woman’s vagina will be penetrated without an opportunity for her to refuse due to coercion from the so-called “public servants” who passed and signed this bill into law.

But whatever. Logic isn’t these folks’ strongsuit.

In any event, this is another minor victory for the Uterati. Celebrate it, then continue setting the world on fire in the name of the almighty vagina.

***If you haven’t checked out Team Uterati’s new website, then I don’t know what you’re waiting for.

[via TPM]

(cross-posted at ABLC]

42 replies
  1. 1
    Bulworth says:

    But, but, but, what about “empowering womenz” and “informed consent”? Sigh. Now all those abortionists will just be free to go on aborting all those babiez without women knowing it.

  2. 2

    Well. Good for our side.

    I wonder what made the guys in Alabama take a second look.

    I’ve never had an abortion and so don’t know. I assume a medical facility would verify the pregnancy before conducting the procedure. Can they determine the stage of pregnancy without some sort of imaging?

  3. 3
    trex says:

    Well gee whiz, Clay. You mean you’re not going to require an ultrasound before getting an abortion if the woman doesn’t want to get an abortion? You can’t buy logic like that, people.

    I believe this was a passive-aggressive little rejoinder, along the lines of “You don’t have to do the time if you choose not to do the crime.”

  4. 4
    Betty Cracker says:

    I like how the party affiliation turned into a registered trademark symbol. Deliberate or not, it’s apt.

  5. 5
    Belafon (formerly anonevent) says:

    Make sure everyone in Alabama keeps harping if he still requires an ultrasound, even if it is not the white cold poker kind.

  6. 6
    General Stuck (Bravo Nope Zero) says:

    A lawmaker in Alabama is backing off a provision that would have required women in his state to undergo a transvaginal ultrasound before getting an abortion — similar to a much-maligned measure in Virginia that was also eventually scrapped.

    These sorry motherfuckers must live in a lead lined triple wet suited echo chamber, Dumb as dirt, and tone deaf doesn’t get near the brazen stupidity they are rolling in. All it takes is a Planned Parenthood dispatch of what they are doing, and they run like scalded dogs. More like scalded chickens. Somebody ought to throw a net over the lot of em before they hurt themselves or someone else that happens to get in range of their third rate brane farts.


  7. 7
    SiubhanDuinne says:

    More good news ( off topic ): one of the Snowflake Twins from Maine is not going to run for re-election. WaPo says this decision “represents a major setback for the GOP’s efforts to regain a majority in the Senate. As a moderate Republican, she may have been the party’s only hope to hold a seat in the strongly blue state.”

    Any Maine-iacs here? Do you know if there are some good Dems in the pipeline who could plausibly and successfully run for her seat? Any other Repubs we need to be wary of?

  8. 8
    Belafon (formerly anonevent) says:

    Stuck in moderation, so I’ll make it a pun instead:

    Make sure everyone in Alabama keeps harping if he still requires an ultrasound, even if it is not the white cold poke-her kind.

  9. 9
    Trentrunner says:

    Let’s remember, ANY non-medical ultrasound for an abortion patient is only designed to shame and possibly deter the women.

    I say, why stop there? Why not also require the woman to:

    – Name the fetus.

    – Pick out BabyGap clothes.

    – Watch highlights from Three Men and a Baby.

    And once she’s aborted, she is required to hold the fetus ‘n fixins in her arms for 90-120 minutes and sing it a lullabye.

    That will teach the dirty, dirty sluts to keep their slutty dirty legs closed.

  10. 10
    WereBear says:

    I really really hope this gets the women riled up. It takes some doing… but then WE REMEMBER.

    And sorry, OT but I am a desperate woman. Does anyone do hosting/site/Wordpress consulting? I’ll pay; I’m desperate at this point. The site went down over the weekend, all Dreamhost could tell me was that I was running out of memory. Switched to a VPS for the site and the MySLQ databases; went nuts learning how to optimize the site and cached it and used Cloudflare; my usage went down but then half the time the blog part works and half the time it goes to a Russian porn site; at least according to the nice people who keep telling me that!

    I have Sucuri as a monitor and scanning service; they have done well for me before, but their scanning tools aren’t picking anything up and I’m going crazy. I last did this kind of IT ten years ago and I’m just at sea now.

    My contact forthecats AT wayofcats DOT com. Please please! For the kitties!

  11. 11
    Ben Cisco says:

    @Betty Cracker: Yeah, it’s a quirk (WordPress?), but it never gets old, EVAR.

  12. 12
    Culture of Truth says:

    Watch highlights from Three Men and a Baby.

    I thought the idea was to stop her from wanting an abortion.

  13. 13
    c u n d gulag says:

    I suggest a counter-bill:

    Males – you don’t need to get a tube shoved up your d*ck if you don’t want to get some V*agra, or some other ‘quicker-pecker-upper.”

  14. 14
  15. 15
    c u n d gulag says:

    @Culture of Truth:
    I love ya, CoT, but no – the idea is to use “The Handmaid’s Tale” as an instructional manual.

  16. 16
    inkadu says:

    Gosh, little fetuses look so much like people, with their little fingers, little toes, and their teeny little nostrils.

    That’s part of why I love Easter so much. The poultry is puffy, yellow, sweet and takes no time to cook.

  17. 17
    General Stuck (Bravo Nope Zero) says:


    Good news very good news

  18. 18
    SiubhanDuinne says:


    Yes. @SiubhanDuinne:

    (Sorry, but I never ever manage to get in first with this kind of breaking news, so I just have to gloat, just a little.)

  19. 19
    Patricia Kayden says:

    Great news. Although forcing a woman to get any kind of ultrasound still sounds unfair to my liberal mind. Oh well.

  20. 20
    Culture of Truth says:

    @c u n d gulag: Okay, but anything with steve guttenberg is going in the wrong direction.

  21. 21
    OzarkHillbilly says:

    Keep your dirty sex crazed minds out of my granddaughter’s vagina. After all, she is only 3 yrs old. Not even old enuf to get pregnant.

  22. 22
    Redshift says:

    The watered-down Virginia bill that still requires a useless external ultrasound passed the state Senate this afternoon. :-(

  23. 23
    General Stuck (Bravo Nope Zero) says:


    Glad you’re here. I’m an Appalachian hillbilly, or was that growing up. Mr. Cole is too, but went to college and shit, and now thinks he is Einstein on the beach.

  24. 24
    JGabriel says:


    Sorry, but I never ever manage to get in first with this kind of breaking news, so I just have to gloat, just a little.

    Hmph. Ya know, I did a word search on both “Olympia” and “Snowe” before posting, just in case anyone else got there first. So I’m not sure you deserve a “Breaking” credit, when you didn’t post her name or a link to follow-up on the story.

    (He said with the dismissive air of someone who came in second.)


  25. 25
    Redshift says:

    @Patricia Kayden: Of course it is. It’s designed to add delay and expense (so poor women will be less likely to be able to afford it), and it’s based on the idea that a woman who has decided to get an abortion is still to ignorant to know that there’s a fetus up in there, and if she’s “informed” of what the blob of cells looks like, of course she’ll fall in line with what the anti-abortion types want.

    It’s a Jim Crow type of tactic — the Supreme Court has told them they can’t make it illegal, so they’re constantly testing the boundaries of just how unpleasant they can make it. Anyone legislator who claims they’re doing this for any other reason is a liar, and anyone who believes them is an idiot.

    For people who want the government to post the Ten Commandments, “thou shalt not bear false witness” is apparently only for other people.

  26. 26
    WaterGirl says:

    @WereBear: Maybe you can let us know how much it costs you. I’m sure I’m not the only one here who things your website makes a wonderful contribution to the world, so perhaps some of us can pitch in to help get this fixed.

  27. 27
    WereBear says:

    @WaterGirl: Aw, Watergirl, I’m tearing up. I will have to do a fund drive soon… just want to make sure I’m not overpaying for all the stuff I’m doing.

    Thanks so much.

  28. 28
    ABL says:

    @Trentrunner: –

    Watch highlights from Three Men and a Baby.


  29. 29
    Marcellus Shale, Public Dick says:

    even if its as likely to win as “my rent is too damned high” everyone who sponsors one of these bills needs a primary challenger to rip them for sponsoring this nonsense.

    make a real and distinct marker out of it.

  30. 30
    Svensker says:

    And the Alabama bill sponsor admits that “discomfort” is the point of the ultrasound crap.

    The pitchforks ain’t pointy enough, folks.

  31. 31
    SiubhanDuinne says:


    Can we have a rousing FYWP? I thought I had pasted the headline with Olympia Snowe’s name, but apparently didn’t. But I didn’t notice that I hadn’t until I had hit “submit” on my insufferably arrogant and gloating post to you. So THEN I tried to edit to apologize and say, yes, JGabriel, you actually got there first and I withdraw my gloat — and THEN Goolagong old FYWP refused to take my edit.

    That’s my story and I’m sticking to it.

  32. 32
    SiubhanDuinne says:


    Goolagong? Really? REALLY? I don’t know what I typed there, but I’m pretty sure it wasn’t “Goolagong.”

    Oh yeah, I remember now, it was “good old.”

  33. 33
    A Ghost To Most says:

    Isn’t unwanted penetration a sexual assault?

  34. 34
    harlana says:

    i’m beginning to think these guys have intentionally overshot with transvaginal so that transabdominal ultrasounds sound “reasonable” by comparison. an involuntary ultrasound of either kind is unacceptable.

    (and yeh, i know they dig the whole rape thing, but did they really believe they could get away with it?)

  35. 35
    ABL says:

    @harlana: absolutely. the great thing about it though is that the jelly on the belly ultrasounds don’t always produce a clear image, so it’s easier to make the case that these laws are about shaming women, not informing them.

  36. 36
    WereBear says:

    @ABL: They ADMIT it.

    There shall be roasted nuts.

    In other news, THANK YOU to all who responded to my shoutout. My issues seem to be solved… though that is what I thought this morning. Then, while checking my email on my lunch hour, I start getting notices that a Russian porn circus had moved in. My security company has now fixed it. So don’t click on my name IF you want porn.

  37. 37
    Mnemosyne says:


    To be fair, the internet is for porn.

    (Yes, I started looking up “Avenue Q” links last night and now I can’t stop!)

  38. 38
    Watership says:

    This is not at all a victory, small or otherwise. This is by design, and it’s as old as the John Birch society. Push something so radical, so over the top that when you back off just a hair, you’re still in radical territory but it doesn’t seem so bad comparatively.

    Hate to be a downer, but we keep doing this dance with them, and losing less is still losing.

  39. 39
    General Stuck (Bravo Nope Zero) says:


    Don’t agree. There is a fail safe point for proposals of the radical, to where it affects the thing most important thing in a democracy. Votes. And this kind of over the top crazy is not doing the GOP any good at all with the female voters. Who are more than half the electorate. We don’t live in a dictatorship, but a place where the other side has the freedom to choose their battles, and in the case of women’s health, they are against that, and dems for it. The audience of importance is the voters, always.

  40. 40
  41. 41
    Spencer says:

    Random question… is the image by Barbara Krueger?

  42. 42
    mclaren says:

    How about retroactive abortion? Starting with Santorum?

Comments are closed.