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Pennsylvania Democrats Make Hay Over Ultrasound Bill

A state House measure that would require women to get an ultrasound before they undergo an abortion is on hold due to concerns voiced by medical groups but that has not stopped opponents from striking back against the bill.

Protesters gathered at the Capitol Monday to rally against the bill. Several political candidates were in the crowd.

"The ultrasound bill of course wouldn't affect me… I'm too old to have children," said Harriet Ellenberger, a Democrat running for a House seat in Westmoreland County. "I'm protesting the bill on behalf of younger women," she said.

House Republicans say, for all intents and purposes, the bill is dead. However a counter measure introduced last week by Senator Larry Farnese (D-Philadelphia) would require men seeking erectile dysfunction medication, like Viagra, to undergo a cardiac stress test and a prostate exam. Farnese is running for re-election.

Also at the rally Monday were Kathleen Kane and Patrick Murphy. Both are running for the privilege to run as the Democratic candidate for Attorney General.

"This is a bill that still been introduced. Now there's some people that are backing away from it, Democrats and Republicans, which we're happy about, but 'til everybody backs away from it, we're going to continue to fight," said Murphy.

House Democrat Babette Josephs recently joined the ranks of the very quotable with her comment about the ultrasound bill's cosponsors. The Philadelphia legislator questioned why any women are supporting the bill. "Are they women," she asked, "or are they men with breasts?"