New Hampshire House Votes to Repeal Parental Notification Law

Yesterday morning the New Hampshire House of Representatives voted to repeal the state’s parental notification law by a 226-130 vote. The mandate, which would have required doctors to notify parents at least 48 hours before a minor obtains an abortion, passed in 2003 by six votes in the state House and by one vote in the state Senate, but never took effect due to legal challenges reaching all the way to the Supreme Court in Ayotte v. Planned Parenthood of Northern New England.

In January 2006 the Court issued its ruling in Ayotte, and unanimously recognized and upheld its own precedent that abortion laws must protect women’s health and well-being. The Supreme Court sent the case back to the lower court to determine if the state legislature would have passed the law with a health exception. If not, the Court agreed that the law should be struck down. Supporters of the parental notification law introduced two amendments intended to salvage the law by adding an exception to protect the mother’s health, but both were defeated.

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