Georgia Democrats propose limitations on vasectomies for men
State Rep. Yasmin Neal's bill comes in response to an abortion-restrictions bill that Georgia legislators are considering.
February 21st, 2012
06:23 PM ET

Georgia Democrats propose limitations on vasectomies for men

As members of Georgia’s House of Representatives debate whether to prohibit abortions for women more than 20 weeks pregnant, House Democrats  introduced their own reproductive rights plan: No more vasectomies that leave "thousands of children ... deprived of birth."

Rep. Yasmin Neal, a Democrat from the Atlanta suburb of Jonesboro, planned on Wednesday to introduce HB 1116, which would prevent men from vasectomies unless needed to avert serious injury or death.

The bill reads: "It is patently unfair that men avoid the rewards of unwanted fatherhood by presuming that their judgment over such matters is more valid than the judgment of the General Assembly. ... It is the purpose of the General Assembly to assert an invasive state interest in the reproductive habits of men in this state and substitute the will of the government over the will of adult men."

“If we legislate women’s bodies, it’s only fair that we legislate men’s,” said Neal, who said she wanted to write bill that would generate emotion and conversation the way anti-abortion bills do. “There are too many problems in the state. Why are you under the skirts of women? I’m sure there are other places to be."

Personally, Neal said, she has no qualms with vasectomies.

“But even if it were proposed as a serious issue,” she said, “it’s still not my place as a woman to tell a man what to do with his body."

The anti-vasectomy bill was a response to a bill that would punish abortions performed after the 20th week of pregnancy with prison sentences between one and 10 years. Georgia law currently prohibits abortion after the second trimester, except to preserve the life and health of the mother. Neal's bill borrows some language directly from the anti-abortion bill.

The anti-abortion bill makes exceptions to avert death or “serious risk of substantial and irreversible physical impairment of a major bodily function” of the mother, but doesn’t include “diagnosis or claim of a mental or emotional condition.” If an abortion occurs after the 20th week, the bill requires doctors to attempt to deliver a living baby.

Earlier discussions about the bill have been “outstanding,” said Rep. Doug McKillip, a Republican from Athens, Georgia, who introduced the anti-abortion bill this month. He said legislators are “drilling down" on questions about when a fetus can feel pain and what exceptions can allow abortions later in pregnancy, and he expects more testimony late this week.

“I’m just disappointed in my colleague, that they would take this opportunity to make light of a very important topic,” McKillip said. “I believe this is a serious topic deserving of serious debate. It feels like a poor attempt at humor.”

Neal said she's serious about making legislators recognize women's rights to make private decisions about their bodies.

"I hope that through the madness this has caused, it gets him to understand where the woman is coming from," she said. "There are a number of women in other states trying the same ploys we’re trying here."

Earlier this month, Democratic Oklahoma Sen. Constance Johnson added - then withdrew - a provision to an anti-abortion bill that read "any action in which a man ejaculates or otherwise deposits semen anywhere but in a woman's vagina shall be interpreted and construed as an action against an unborn child." The state Senate passed the bill this month.

In January, as the Virginia state Senate debated a bill that required women to have an ultrasound before an abortion, Democrat Janet Howell attached an amendment that required men to have rectal exams and cardiac stress tests before they could receive prescriptions for erectile dysfunction medication like Viagra. The amendment was rejected in the Senate, 21-19.

CNN affiliate WAVY reported that hundreds gathered this week to protest the ultrasound bill,  which is up for a vote in Virginia's House of Delegates, and another that says life begins at conception.

On the Georgia House floor, Neal doesn't anticipate her anti-vasectomy bill will generate much serious debate.

"If it moves anywhere," she said, "that’ll be a very interesting day."

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Filed under: Abortion • Georgia • Health • Politics
soundoff (1,943 Responses)
  1. Butterbuns

    Sorry guys, no more hand jobs. You're wasting sperm that could be used to make a baby.

    February 27, 2012 at 2:51 pm | Report abuse |
  2. seedyore

    People keep talking about women making decisions about what's best for their own bodies. Its not the woman's body that is the issue... its the body and life of the unborn child that is. Just because that child is dependent on the mother for survival for a time during his/her early development doesn't mean that mother has the right to kill that child at will for her own convenience. The decision about what a woman does with her body is made long before she conceives. Clearly those who are confused about that don't understand cause and effect.

    February 27, 2012 at 5:26 pm | Report abuse |
  3. CCMars

    I love how some people here are completely missing the point of this "bill." Read the entire article, people. If you still don't get it, then...well, that says more about you than it does anybody else.

    February 27, 2012 at 7:25 pm | Report abuse |
  4. mike

    Surely we need abortion to ensure Islam does indeed take over by sheer numbers of babies..and eventually legally eliminates any further debate on womens rights.

    February 27, 2012 at 7:41 pm | Report abuse |
    • Denise

      I agree with you. Just shows the stupidity or absurdity of the Democrat Party. She's upset about pro-life. How many lives would be here happily if they had not been aborted. I made that stupid mistake listening to the advice at the slaughter house. They only advise one way, today I am missing my grandchildren. The abortion mill serves two purposes; population control and mega bucks for the abortionists.

      February 28, 2012 at 10:19 am | Report abuse |
    • michael

      The problem is that the muslims don't get abortions! obama is one example. They should be forced to abort if the have one child! But I am against abortion!

      February 28, 2012 at 7:29 pm | Report abuse |
    • EM

      I don't know how Rep. McKillip (R) does not see his stance as Shariah law. It's the age-old argument that men are in charge of women. Ho-hum.

      March 4, 2012 at 12:12 pm | Report abuse |
  5. Hard Thought

    I don't care who aborts what, but to deny that abortion affects two people, mother and child, is to strain at gnats and swallow camels.

    This is not about a woman's right to choose, this is about aborting a viable fetus, AKA a child.

    How many abortion supporters support the death penalty? What is the difference? You are still taking life.

    I personally support the death penalty and support restrictions on abortion after a certain point.

    Women are not property, they can't be bought and sold. Neither can an almost viable fetus. To think otherwise is ludicrous.

    February 28, 2012 at 5:02 am | Report abuse |

    There is a garbage dump in staten island that will make a very nice homeland for a new nation of christians and jewish idiots who think they have divine authority to control other people's lives. I say it's time we control them. I say we give them that garbage dump, let them make their own country there, and then, we can bomb them until they are no more. Then and only then shall we have freedom, true freedom.

    February 28, 2012 at 5:22 pm | Report abuse |
    • Maurice Rogerson

      Come visit me, you little creep.

      February 28, 2012 at 7:51 pm | Report abuse |
    • S1N

      How about you come visit me instead, Maurice? I'm in Riverview, FL. Don't make threats you can't back up. Man up, or gtfo.

      March 2, 2012 at 7:06 pm | Report abuse |
  7. michael

    YES! the democraps are really stupid!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

    February 28, 2012 at 7:31 pm | Report abuse |
    • Peace Lover

      She is making a point about if you going to control and make laws of over women's bodies, you can do the same to men's as well..

      March 2, 2012 at 3:05 pm | Report abuse |
  8. Joe

    Is this a joke?

    February 29, 2012 at 1:21 pm | Report abuse |
    • Dee G

      She is trying to make a point, but I guess most people are not getting it. If the goverment thinks it has the right to tell a woman what she can do with her body, then it should be able to tell a man what he can do with his body, also.

      February 29, 2012 at 1:42 pm | Report abuse |
  9. Robert M

    If they're so concerned about preserving their choice, why not just take the ultimate step and decriminalize Murder, for everyone. THEN, already born people wouldn't have the right to life exclusively. Really, does current law make sense, that killing a child 1 second before birth is no more a crime than vacuuming your floor, yet killing the same child 1 second after birth would make you a Murderer, a monster?
    I think the test you should have to pass to have an abortion should include the woman having to point a gun she thinks is loaded at a toddler, and if she can't pull the trigger she shouldn't be able to end her own child's life. That would drive home the seriousness of the act she is proposing.
    I was an unexpected unwed teenage pregnancy, and every morning I wake up and thank my mother for CHOOSING to allow me to be born 28 years ago. I think she made the right choice, but I may be biased, and I bet any aborted child you could ask would express the same legitimate bias. Abortion is just like death, no one has come back and told us what it was like.

    February 29, 2012 at 9:35 pm | Report abuse |
    • Mary

      That's right your Mother Chosed to have you.

      March 1, 2012 at 12:48 pm | Report abuse |
    • angelina

      It would have been better for everybody if my mother has aborted me.

      March 3, 2012 at 4:23 am | Report abuse |
    • angelina

      It would have been better for everybody if my mother had aborted me, and I wish she had.

      March 3, 2012 at 4:24 am | Report abuse |
  10. Mark

    What a great point she is making- Bravo
    And I'm am not a liberal- We are not all alike.
    When the divisive subjects arise its just a sideshow to distract us from something real important the .gov probably doesn't want us to see. Its like Iran or North Korea trotting out the same tired rhetoric and panties instantly forming knots to no avail.

    March 1, 2012 at 4:16 pm | Report abuse |
  11. John Scopes

    The laws in this country run against rational thinking sometimes.

    Women want the right to choose when to kill off a life, privately. But if the woman, ALONE, chooses to keep it, the man is on the hook for support. If the woman, ALONE, decides to terminate its life, the man has no say whatsoever.

    I'm all for equality. But this is yet one more example of not equality, but superiority. Can't really blame the white men of the past for wanting it, can we?

    March 2, 2012 at 1:39 pm | Report abuse |
    • Kate

      John and Zabbot-

      women carry the baby for nine months. men don't. that's why it has to be her choice, it's one of the few perks that come with the swollen feet, aching backs, puking, and the horrible pain of childbirth. imagine going through all of that when you don't want to, for a man who says "you have to have my baby."

      i couldn't imagine not wanting a baby and being forced to have one.

      March 3, 2012 at 10:42 pm | Report abuse |
  12. Jena

    They aren't comparing apples to apples here. Vasectomies is a form of sterilization. So if they are to be comparing it to something it should be the Tubal Ligations and Novasure/Essure procedures, not abortions. Idiots.

    March 4, 2012 at 2:15 am | Report abuse |
  13. EM

    Does Rep. McKillip (R) and his ilk not see that his stance is basically Shariah law? It's just another part of the age-old, world-wide argument that men are in charge of women. Sigh.

    March 4, 2012 at 12:14 pm | Report abuse |
  14. Kristin

    And our tax dollars are hard at work here...... GEEZ!! What an idiot!!!!

    March 7, 2012 at 11:49 pm | Report abuse |
  15. augustghost sound like someone from florida...angry all the effin time

    March 11, 2012 at 10:11 am | Report abuse |
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