New abortion bill creates controversy

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MEMPHIS, Tenn. -- President and CEO of Planned Parenthood in Memphis, Ashley Coffield was disappointed.

A new law signed by Governor Bill Haslam would require women to wait at least 48 hours before getting an abortion in the state of Tennessee.

Coffield told WREG the new law was difficult for women, especially those who have to travel to seek services.

"It adds unnecessary and financial and emotional hardships to women who are making the deeply difficult decision to end a pregnancy." she said.

She and many others said the law doesn't allow a doctor to make decisions about individual patients.

"They did not consult the medical community about this bill and they rejected every amendment for how to handle rape and incest," Coffield claimed.

With the passage of the law, Tennessee has become one of 27 states with a mandatory waiting period before an abortion can be performed.

The signing of the bill came after Governor Haslam signed another measure that required clinics that perform 50 abortions or more a year to be licensd a s Ambulatory Surgical Centers.

"I love it. It's a wonderful step in the right direction," said Amanda Lipetri, the Co-Founder of Heart Of Tennessee Pro-Life.

Lipetri's said the organization worked to provide women in smaller communities other options besides abortion.

She said the 48-hour waiting period would make women think about their decision.

"They're going to think about that life that's inside their womb that's depending on them so it will give women time to stop, slow down and think," she explained.

These new changes in Tennessee follow an amendment approved by voters back in November that allowed lawmakers to change abortion policies.

With that being said, there could be more changes on the horizon.

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