The state Board of Health voted yesterday 12-6 to nix the phrase “death of the unborn child” from abortion regulations passed by the legislature in 2015, as well as the remnants of the 2013 law that was largely struck down by an appellate court. 

The regulations would instead keep the current definition of abortion: “termination of the pregnancy.” Gov. Asa Hutchinson and the legislature have to approve the regulations and Hutchinson said he opposes the board’s decision. 

Much more details from a good report by Andy Davis at the D-G. 

Guess who isn’t happy about the board’s actions? Sen. Jason Rapert took to social media to write, “Arkansas Board of Health and Medical Board-you have crossed the line-made a very poor decision to defy the Legislature & defy the law.” He added, “Fortunately we have several remedies for boards who cannot follow the law including this.” 


Davis reports that the Department of Health’s director, Nate Smith, warned the board that the legislature would not only reject the re-wording, but could retaliate against the board.

UPDATE: On Twitter, Rapert is calling for the resignation of board members refusing to play his semantic games.