A state lawmaker in Utah hopes to prohibit abortions that are performed based on the race or gender of the fetus.
Utah state Sen. Margaret Dayton, a Republican, plans to introduce a bill titled “Gender Selection Abortion Prohibition,” according to the Deseret News. The legislation is still being drafted.
Planned Parenthood of Utah Executive Director Karrie said the legislation was a solution in search of a problem.
“I would suspect that the only reason one would be looking at this type of legislation is to do abortion legislation, not to solve a problem,” she told the Deseret News.
The U.S. House of Representatives rejected similar legislation earlier this year. The Prenatal Nondiscrimination Act (PRENDA) would have punished abortion doctors with up to five-years in prison if race or sex was a factor in a woman’s decision to terminate her pregnancy.
Critics of the legislation said it would encourage racial profiling by doctors. Sex-selective abortions are performed in parts in East and South Asia, where male babies are preferred over female.
Arizona, Oklahoma and Pennsylvania have all passed laws to prohibit sex-selective abortions.
[Abortion protester via Ryan Rodrick Beiler / Shutterstock]