Abortion Foes Begin Push For New Kansas Laws

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TOPEKA, Kan. (AP/WIBW) _ Abortion opponents are urging a Kansas Senate committee to back legislation barring doctors from terminating pregnancies solely because a woman doesn't want a baby of a certain gender.

Monday's hearing by the Public Health and Welfare Committee began a push by anti-abortion groups and legislators for new restrictions on abortion and abortion providers.

The bill on so-called sex-selection abortions would make it a misdemeanor the first time a doctor was caught performing such a procedure. Doctors also could face lawsuits from family members of abortion patients.

Steven Mosher, president of the Population Research Institute, was among those testifying in support of the bill. He says sex-selective abortion has reached epidemic proportions in China and it's also happening in the United States.

Mosher says it is discrimination when parents have an abortion because they don't want the child because of it's sex and he says girls usually beart the brunt of it.

"Annecdotal evidence shows that of 100 woman who come in with the idea of doing a sex selection abortion, if it's not the right sex, 99 of them will eliminate a little girl. Only one in 100 will eliminate a little boy," he said.

Mosher says the problem is especially prominent for families having their second or third child.

No abortion rights groups testified Monday, but National Organization for Women lobbyist Elise Higgins questioned whether such a measure can be enforced.