Missouri's GOP leaders are crushed once again in the Star's latest Capitol Watch editorial:
[T]he Missouri House passed a bill that would allow health care workers to refuse to participate in procedures that violate their “conscience or principles.” That would include abortion, contraception procedures, sterilization and certain forms of stem cell research.
During debate, Republican Tim Jones of Eureka, the bill’s sponsor, proposed that patients would benefit from this bill because when a medical procedure is taking place, you want everyone on board with what is going on. "My father is a veterinarian. I grew up in operating rooms,” Jones proclaimed, though it is unclear how observing surgeries on animals translates to, say, a birth control procedure.
This unnecessary and troublesome bill puts the onus on patients to find medical providers willing to perform established procedures, even in emergency situations. In some of Missouri’s rural areas, that could pose a substantial burden...
In a reprieve for voters’ rights, the Missouri legislature has again been thwarted in its attempt to make voting more difficult by requiring people to produce a photo ID at the polls...We would like to think that the GOP lawmakers pushing for a photo ID requirement will cut their losses after two rebuffs from the courts, but we know better.
In other ballot news, the House this week passed a bill requiring that candidates for the U.S. presidency produce their birth certificate in order to appear on Missouri’s ballot.
The birther movement lives on.
Lest anyone think the Missouri legislature isn’t getting any important work done, let it be known that bills to designate an official state butterfly (the Fritillary) and an official state exercise (jumping jacks) have passed the House and are awaiting Senate action.
Also, House member Jeanie Riddle, a Republican from Callaway County, has introduced a bill to designate the Hawken Rifle as the official state rifle.