I honestly thought we were going to get at least one veto.
Here’s the press release from the Governor’s office:
BISMARCK, ND – Gov. Jack Dalrymple today signed HB 1305, HB 1456 and SB 2305 and provided the following statements to the Legislature:
North Dakota House and Senate presiding officers:
I have signed HB 1305 which would ban abortions performed solely for the purpose of gender selection and genetic abnormalities.
I have signed HB 1456 which would ban abortions after the detection of a fetal heartbeat. Although the likelihood of this measure surviving a court challenge remains in question, this bill is nevertheless a legitimate attempt by a state legislature to discover the boundaries of Roe v. Wade. Because the U.S. Supreme Court has allowed state restrictions on the performing of abortions and because the Supreme Court has never considered this precise restriction in HB 1456, the constitutionality of this measure is an open question. The Legislative Assembly before it adjourns should appropriate dollars for a litigation fund available to the Attorney General.
I have signed SB 2305 which requires admitting and staff privileges at a nearby hospital for any physician who performs abortions in North Dakota. The added requirement that the hospital privileges must include allowing abortions to take place in their facility greatly increases the chances that this measure will face a court challenge. Nevertheless, it is a legitimate and new question for the courts regarding a precise restriction on doctors who perform abortions.
Again, I honestly thought he’d veto at least one of these bills.
More than likely these bills are going to cost at least a couple of Republican legislative seats in the Red River Valley. But the alternative, politically speaking, was for Dalrymple to veto the bills and set off a civil war in the party.
At a time when there’s already a lot of dissatisfaction in conservative ranks over the fiscal track record of Republican elected officials, the last thing Dalrymple needed to do was demonstrate that he’s not all that socially conservative either.