HELENA — Here is how NARAL Pro-Choice Montana, a group that supports abortion rights, rated Ryan Zinke for his votes on abortion-related issues in 2009 and 2011.
The Gazette State Bureau was unable to find a legislative scorecard from the Montana Right to Life Association or other anti-abortion groups.
In 2009, NARAL Pro-Choice Montana gave Zinke a 65 percent rating.
Zinke voted with the position of this group four out of seven times, or 57 percent of the time. However, his rating was 65 percent. The group weighted those votes that would restrict access to abortion heavier than those related to sex education and issues regarding contraceptives, according to Maggie Moran, executive director of NARAL Pro-Choice Montana, who spoke to the group’s former director who put together these ratings.
Here’s a look at its scorecard:
Senate Bill 46, by Sen. Dan McGee, R-Laurel, to amend the constitutional right of privacy in the Montana Constitution to state that the projection of the unborn human life is a compelling state interest, thus banning abortion. The bill died in the House. Zinke voted “no.” NARAL Pro-Choice Montana also opposed the bill.
SB406, also by McGee, to amend the constitution to redefine that life begins as fertilization, establishing constitutional rights for a fertilized egg separate from those of the pregnant women, thus banning abortion. The bill died in the House. Zinke voted “no.” NARAL Pro-Choice Montana also opposed the bill.
SB374, by Sen. Gary Perry, R-Manhattan, to revise laws to require notification of parents of minor girls who are seeking abortions. The bill died in the House. Zinke voted “yes,” contrary of the position of NARAL Pro-Choice Montana.
SB327, by Sen. Aubyn Curtiss, R-Fortine, to define “unborn child” as a human who is conceived but not yet born as part of a bill to provide protection for Montana mothers to be, thus banning abortions. The bill died in the House. Zinke voted “yes,” while NARAL Pro-Choice Montana opposed the bill.
SB142, by Perry, to repeal provisions Montana’s unisex or non-gender insurance law. It would have eliminated current mandates that insurance plans provide maternity care and contraceptive coverage in health insurance plans and allowed insurers to charge men and women different insurance rates, based on gender. The bill died in the House. Zinke voted “yes,” contrary to the position of NARAL Pro-Choice Montana’s position.
HB307, by Rep. Don Roberts, R-Billings, to allow a health care provider to dispense a prescription drug when the local pharmacy does not carry it. Advocates said it would improve access to contraception in rural communities if a pharmacist refused to fill birth control prescriptions. Zinke voted “yes.” NARAL Pro-Choice Montana supported the bill.
HB676, by Rep. Chuck Hunter, D-Helena, to remove the prohibition of birth control in the Children’s Health Insurance program. The Senate vote scored was on a motion by Rep. Greg Hinkle, R-Thompson Falls, to reinstate the prohibition on birth control in CHIP. Zinke voted “no,” and NARAL Pro-Choice Montana opposed the amendment.
Here were Zinke’s ratings from NARAL Pro-Choice Montana in 2011, when it gave him a zero percent score;
HB574, by Rep. Wendy Warburton, R-Havre, on a proposed constitutional amendment to specify there is no right to abortion or public funding for abortion. It failed to get enough votes to appear on the ballot. Zinke voted “yes,” while NARAL Pro-Choice Montana opposed it.
HB456, by Rep. Cary Smith, R-Billings, to define the scope and boundaries of sex education classes in K-12 public schools and requiring parents to sign a form opting their children in the class if they want them to take it. Schweitzer vetoed the bill. Zinke voted “yes,” while NARAL Pro-Choice Montana opposed the bill.
SB97, by Sen. Jim Shockley, R-Victor, to require young women under age 16 to obtain parental consent or appear before a judge to have an abortion. Schweitzer vetoed the bill. Zinke voted “yes,” while NARAL Pro-Choice Montana opposed it.
SB176, by Sen. Rowlie Hutton, R-Havre, to prohibit qualified health plans under health care exchange-sponsored plans from covering abortion services. Schweitzer vetoed the bill. Zinke voted “yes,” while NARAL Pro-Choice Montana opposed it.
HB167, by Rep. Keith Regier, R-Kalispell, to criminalize offenses involving the death of an unborn child. Zinke was the Senate sponsor of the bill. Schweitzer vetoed the bill. Zinke voted “yes,” while NARAL Pro-Choice Montana opposed it.
HB627. By Rep. Jerry Bennett, R-Libby, for a legislative referendum to revise parental notice and judicial bypass provisions for minors seeking abortion. It went directly on the 2012 ballot, and voters passed it. It later was struck down in court. Zinke voted “yes,” while NARAL Pro-Choice Montana opposed it.