Virtually any legislation dealing with the subject of abortion will be hotly controversial, and the bill signed without comment by Gov. Corbett late last week is no exception.
And while the new law that takes effect in six months deals with abortion clinics, we perceive it not so much an abortion issue as a public health issue.
The bill, which received vigorous debate in both the House and the Senate, was introduced in response to the "House of Horrors" case in Philadelphia where late-term fetuses were killed after being delivered alive and one woman died as a result of a botched abortion procedure. The conditions at Dr. Kermit Gosnell's (and we use the title Dr. only because it appears on his records) Women's Medical Society facility were horrendous, his staff untrained. Since then, unsanitary conditions have been discovered at an abortion clinic in Allentown.
Opponents of the legislation have argued that compliance with stricter health requirements would, in effect, put some of these clinics out of business.
That's fine with us, because we are opposed to any invasive surgical procedure performed in unsanitary and unhealthy environments by people who are inadequately trained.
The new law essentially requires the same standards in abortion facilities that the state requires in other surgical facilities and provides for unannounced inspections.
Take away the "abortion" segment of this legislation and it would have sailed through the General Assembly, as it should have.