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Abortion Bill Battle

April 29th, 2010 by flanews

Theres a fight in Tallahassee tonight to keep abortion legislation off the governors desk. The bill would make getting an abortion more expensive and require pregnant women in their first trimester to have an ultrasound before going through with the procedure. As Whitney Ray tells us, it may also force the hand of Governor Charlie Crist with a damned if you do damned dont scenario.

Pro-Life Senators are pulling strings in a last ditch effort to curb the number of abortions in Florida.

Wednesday a health care bill was amended to require pregnant women seeking an abortion in their first trimester to pay for an ultrasound. They would then have the choice of viewing the image.

Senate Democrats railed against the amendment.

I think this is being done to try and compel women to come to a judgment on a choice that should be a personal one, said Senator Dan Gelber.

Thursday, House Democrats brought the chamber to a halt when they refused to allow leadership to waive rules to bring the senate bill to the floor.

At this point its a standoff and well wait and see what happens, said Representative Jim Waldman.

Despite efforts to stop the legislation the plan is still alive. And if the bill ends up on the Governors desk, there are political implications. Whether he signs it or vetoes it, one thing is for sure; it will cost him votes.

Bill Sponsor Andy Gardiner doesnt know what Crist might do with the legislation.

In the end it will be the governors decisions, but hes made it very clear he is pro-life and I think these are pro-life issues, said Senator Andy Gardiner.

There is also an amendment to the bill barring any insurance company that receives a state or federal tax credit from paying for an abortion.

Three southern states have adopted similar legislation. Twelve other states allow individual clinics to choose if a patient in her first trimester has to have an ultrasound. Its already common practice for women further along in their pregnancies to have an ultrasound so abortion doctors have more information before they begin the procedure.

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