Bill To Combat Abortion Misinformation Introduced In South Dakota

State Rep. Taylor Rehfeldt (R-SD) introduced the “Med Ed Bill” Wednesday in South Dakota that seeks to provide clarification on the state’s restrictions on abortion as well as when legal abortions can still happen when a mother’s life is at risk during pregnancy.

“The abortion topic has really just become this political warzone,” Rehfeldt told the Washington Examiner in an interview. “What we’re doing in South Dakota [is] putting women and babies first. We’re making sure that, if there is confusion for providers, that we’re stepping up to the plate where other people are not providing clarification.”

Rehfeldt holds a doctorate in nursing and was a practicing nurse before taking office in 2021. She believes that much of the negative rhetoric surrounding South Dakota’s abortion restrictions has to do with people misunderstanding the issues.

Rehfeldt’s bill would authorize the South Dakota Department of Health to spend money on the production of training videos and material that would clarify how the state’s abortion restrictions should be interpreted in cases where the mother’s life is at risk during pregnancy.

On June 24, 2022, following the Supreme Court’s decision to overturn Roe v. Wade, South Dakota began enforcing its trigger ban which “prohibits all abortions except to preserve the life of the pregnant person.” It is one of America’s strictest abortion bans.

Abortion has been a hot-button topic in America for a long time, but the rhetoric surrounding the topic has increased since the Court’s decision to overturn Roe v Wade.

South Dakota Gov. Kristi Noem (R) has been one of the most outspoken pro-life governors in the abortion debate in America.

“Our nation was founded on the fundamental principle ‘That all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty, and the Pursuit of Happiness.’ Among these, Life comes first. All other rights are not even possible if Life is not first protected,” Noem’s website states.

The “Med Ed Bill” attempts to remove the politicization of the topic and explain the facts behind South Dakota’s near-total abortion ban.

“I think because of the politicization of this topic that it’s easy for providers to be confused,” Rehfeldt said, acknowledging the common criticism. “And I don’t blame some of them for being confused because of the political nature of this conversation.”