House passes medical conscience bill

Mar 30, 2012

The Missouri House has reignited intense debate over women’s reproductive rights, passing legislation that would exempt doctors and other health care workers from performing medical procedures that violate their religious beliefs.

Democratic Representative Margo McNeil of St. Louis County opposed the legislation, arguing that allowing health professionals to opt out of performing certain procedures could be a public health threat. 

“It could delay people getting the health care they need,” she said. “It’s outrageous, and this is really an attack on women and their ability to control their lives.”

The bill’s sponsor, GOP leader Tim Jones, vehemently disagreed, saying it’s about worker’s rights.

“To play partisan political games here, take my words out of context, and make divisive arguments I think is despicable and disgusting to ladies.”

The bill passed on a mostly partisan vote, and now goes to the Senate.