Mail-Order Birth Control Distributors Could Be Criminalized In New House Bill

Despite Oklahoma's strict abortion ban, some state lawmakers say some people are still able to access chemical abortion pills through the mail. A new bill would criminalize anybody who distributed those pills.

Thursday, March 14th 2024, 4:24 pm

By: News 9


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Oklahoma has one of the strictest abortion bans in the country, but state lawmakers say some people are still able to access chemical abortion pills through the mail.

A bill moving through the legislature would criminalize anybody who distributed those pills.

House Bill 3013 would criminalize the trafficking of abortion-inducing drugs, making it a felony offense.

The legislation passed off the house floor with a vote of 77-18. All of those ‘no’ votes were from Democrats who say lawmakers shouldn’t be spending more time on abortion issues.

“I don't see this as a pro-life or even a pro-choice, this is a criminal action that we are trying to stop,” said Rep. Denise Crosswhite-Hader, ( R) Piedmont. “We're not addressing a woman taking care of herself, this is a bill on trafficking thesis people taking advantage of people at their most vulnerable.”

The author of the bill, Rep. Crosswhite- Hader says the legislation is meant to curb the distribution of mail-ordered abortion pills. “What has stopped is surgical abortions. What has not stopped is chemical abortions,” said Rep. Crosswhite-Hader.

Multiple house democrats questioned and debated the measure, pushing back on the legislation. “Restrictions to abortion access across the country have created danger for the women not just in this state but every state where they have come down hard on this,” said Rep. Forrest Bennett, (D) OKC.

Representative Forrest Bennett said there wasn’t consistency with the GOP supermajority, on a lot of the legislation they passed.

He begged the question, if the legislature is restricting some medication, why wouldn't they restrict all medication, including medication for erectile dysfunction?  “That's not natural. If God didn't want that man to reproduce, he made it so. Why should we play god and overrule him?” said Rep. Bennett.

Minority Leader Cyndi Munson says this legislation will add another layer of confusion in the state’s abortion laws. “I heard from my constituents that said, are y’all still working on anti-abortion legislation, are you all still attacking my right to healthcare?” said Rep. Munson. “Where are they going to go to get the medication that they need that is safe under the care of a physician if they don't have access to it?”

The bill would exclude pharmacists, manufacturers, or distributors who are operating lawfully for medical purposes “We're not stopping the legitimate use for these pills, but we're stopping somebody who is profiting for themselves taking advantage of somebody who is not thinking as clearly as possible,” said Rep. Crosswhite- Hader.

The bill passed off the floor with a vote of 77-18 and will head to the Senate for consideration.

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