Okla. Strikes Down Law That Would Have 'Undressed' Women

Davis said money spent on women in "personal crisis" could be better spent addressing Oklahoma's high teen pregnancy rate -- which is the sixth highest in the nation, according to a 2009 report from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

Oklahoma allows abortions to be performed up to 22 weeks. Only three doctors in the state are known to perform abortions.

In 2007, more than 6,300 abortions were performed in Oklahoma, down slightly from the previous year and reflecting a nationwide trend according to Planned Parenthood, an organization that supports abortion rights.

"Our reproductive rights are challenged yearly in the Oklahoma legislature, and our state seems to have become a testing ground for oppressive restrictions on abortion access," said Keri Parks, director of external affairs for Planned Parenthood of Central Oklahoma

The number of abortion restrictions is increasing nationwide, according to Planned Parenthood. During the 2009 state legislative session, 23 bills were introduced in Texas and 18 were introduced in Mississippi.

But supporters said the law was not about restricting access to abortion but helping the state gather important information.

"I don't think [the bill] has anything to do with restrictions or roadblocks," said David Dunn, director of research for the Oklahoma Family Policy Council, which opposes abortion.

"The government knows what the situation is and isn't operating in the dark," said Dunn, who dismissed complaints that the new Web site might reveal confidential information.

"We might have a situation in some small town, but I don't know why it's a big deal if abortion is legal and there is nothing wrong, why would people be ashamed to have an abortion?" he asked.

Recording statistical data on abortions is nothing new. Currently 46 out of 50 states and the District of Columbia have mandatory or voluntary reporting, according to the Guttmacher Institute, which promotes sexual and reproductive health worldwide.

Since 1969, when abortion was legal in only a handful of states, the CDC had gathered and released aggregate data provided by state health departments to track maternal morbidity and mortality.

"Generally, the requirements have been benign," said Elizabeth Nash, a Guttmacher public policy associate. "The forms go to the health department and they put them under lock and key and send the data to the CDC."

But over time, as the abortion debate has heated up, states have added "twists and turns" to those requirements, asking for details on minors and fathers of the fetus, according to Nash.

"They are becoming more and more intrusive," she told ABCNews.com.

As for women seeking abortion, a 2009 Guttmacher report says that the abortion rate is roughly equal in countries where it is legal and those where it is highly restricted.

"Honestly," said Nash. "It seems to be that women surmount all sorts of barriers to abortion waiting periods. They travel long distances to get child care because they know what they need to do. Women still get abortions and I think this is just adding to their burden."

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