Myth vs. Fact: Oklahoma HB 4327 and New Protections for Life

Blog Articles · May 27, 2022

This week, Oklahoma Governor Kevin Stitt signed HB 4327 into law, providing historic new protections for life in the state of Oklahoma. As one of the strongest laws to protect life in the country, the pro-abortion lobby has already started a massive smear campaign. However, this law enacts much-needed protections for both unborn children and their mothers. While the radical abortion industry spreads lies to try and scare voters ahead of the midterm elections, Heritage Action is debunking the rumors and setting the record straight on how this law will enact important protections for life.

Here are the facts of the law:

Myth 1: Oklahoma’s law puts women’s lives at risk.

FACT: Aside from protecting unborn babies, the law actually protects women’s health care in important ways.

Abortions lead to a number of dangerous health risks for the mother, both short-term and long-term, including blood clots, infections, cardiac arrest, respiratory arrest, subsequent preterm birth, future placenta previa, miscarriage and even death. Aside from the risks of the procedures themselves, there are also severe mental health side effects for women post-abortion.

Even prior to the law, Oklahoma’s state government offered several important resources to connect pregnant women with organizations to help them through their pregnancy and beyond. The services include routine prenatal care, connecting with local obstetric providers for delivery and transfer care for high-risk conditions, case management, education, referrals, and nutrition counseling and referral to WIC.

Myth 2: HB 4327 bans all abortions in all circumstances.

FACT: Contrary to the pro-abortion ACLU’s claims, the plain text of the statue does include exceptions for Oklahomans seeking abortions in the case of medical emergencies to save the life of the mother and rape or incest.

The bill lists exceptions for circumstances when “the abortion is necessary to save the life of a pregnant woman in a medical emergency” or “the pregnancy is the result of rape, sexual assault, or incest that has been reported to law enforcement.”

Myth 3: Oklahoma will next ban birth control and other contraception.

FACT: HB 4327 does not apply to contraception. In defining the term “abortion,” the bill explicitly explains that the definition “does not include the use, prescription, administration, procuring, or selling of Plan B, morning-after pills, or any other type of contraception or emergency contraception.” Each of these issues – abortion, birth control, and contraception – stands on its own merits and arguments. Efforts to change policy on these or any other issue have nothing to do with whether Roe v. Wade was a legitimate decision.

This is a familiar tactic for the pro-abortion Left. As we saw following the first-draft opinion in Dobbs, the Left immediately spread lies about potential bans on everything from contraception to same-sex or inter-racial marriage. The draft opinion in Dobbs twice explicitly states that overruling Roe v. Wade has absolutely no effect on any other rights.

Both in Oklahoma’s case and the draft opinion in Dobbs, this claim has been completely debunked, but the Left continues to push it in an attempt to play politics for their own gain. Most notably, this lie was even spread by Vice President Kamala Harris.

Myth 4: HB 4327 is a bounty law that criminalizes abortion.

FACT: Similar to the Texas legislation, this law does not criminalize abortion and it is not a bounty law. Instead, it allows private citizens to sue those who are either performing or aiding and abetting an abortion. This does not include pregnant women seeking an abortion.

Previous pro-life legislation in the state used the same approach, focusing mainly on abortion providers rather than women seeking abortions.