CORRECTED: This post has been corrected to reflect the correct speaker for the closing argument.
The bill will now return to the Senate for concurrence, and then head to the governor’s desk for a signature.
An amendment that would delete “causes of” and substitute “risks for,” sponsored by Rep. Jean Farmer-Butterfield, a Democrat from Wilson, passed in a vote of 110-4. The Committee on Health and Human Services struck down a similar amendment previously.
Rep. Paul Stam, a Republican from Apex and the bill’s main sponsor, supported the amendment, saying that “risk is not incorrect.” In a previous interview, though, he stated that “cause” is the correct “scientific term.”
“We’re going to tell them that a 12-year-old is supposed to make a connection that if they have an abortion … and what that is, that they may then later on in life have a miscarriage?” asked Rep. Rick Glazier, a Democrat from Fayetteville. He said the law would “scare teachers” who haven’t breached the subject before and aren’t comfortable doing so.
The bill doesn't mention miscarriages but does require teachers to explain that an abortion is one of several things that is a risk factor for pre-term births in the future.
In the closing arguments, Rep. James Fulghum, a Republican from Raleigh, argued that the bill was needed.
“If you don’t believe that a 9- or 10-year-old is experimenting with sex, you better wake up,” Fulghum said.
—Annalise Frank, staff writer