Posted by: Donna
Michael Bryan at Blog for Arizona beat me to it. Sen. Nancy Barto’s “wrongful life” bill, that passed in the State Senate today, is all about tort reform.
This bill isn’t about preventing abortions; there is no way it will prevent even a single abortion, since it exempts intentional or grossly negligent actions or omissions. Doctors won’t be allowed to lie to patients in order to trick them into not having an abortion and get away with it under this bill.
So what is this bill about, if not preventing abortions? It’s about the money — specifically, not giving any to the parents of profoundly sick kids who need that financial compensation to provide for those kids’ needs. All it does is save med-mal insurers a few bucks. It’s just another cruel example of how those who label themselves ‘pro-life’ seem to lose interest in the quality of those lives after birth. It demonstrates clearly that frequently those who claim to be moved by faith are actually moved by the deep pockets of their financial backers.
A couple of things to consider about Sen. Nancy Barto’s “wrongful life” bill that passed the AZ Senate today:
1. Contrary to what we’ve had drilled into us by conservative corporate interests, medical malpractice suits are ridiculously hard to pursue, let alone win, generally speaking. And the burden of proof on the part of a plaintiff to prove with a preponderance of evidence that her health care provider negligently or nefariously withheld information about birth defects is incomprehensibly high. On that basis alone this bill is a wholly unnecessary solution to a non-existent problem. (But you probably already knew that.)
2. I’m pretty sure Nancy Barto doesn’t think doctors need to lie about horrible birth defects of fetuses or the deadly threats to women that can occur as a result of pregnancy complications. Why would she? Being a true blue anti-choicer, Barto is probably convinced that such things never happen. And as Michael notes, the bill doesn’t allow doctors to lie about serious problems anyway.
This isn’t about doctors, or even really about abortion. This is the rare anti-choice bill that isn’t driven purely by hating on the ladies. Don’t get me wrong, they’re still getting their mucho hate on for the ladies here (they never miss a good opportunity to do that) but this is one case where social conservatives are tipping their hands to reveal how much they do the bidding of the ruling class. Here’s Center for Arizona Policy’s “fact sheet”:
Third, prohibiting these types of lawsuits “can contribute to a decrease in medical liability claims,” which will help curb rising medical costs. In addition, a statutory prohibition prevents “courts from dictating practice to physicians especially where the doctors were ‘in no way responsible’ for the defects or disabilities of the children.”
Finally, preventing these claims from being brought will reduce the costs associated with tort litigation and potential damages.
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