A bill advanced by Republican lawmakers in Virginia would require women seeking abortions to first get an ultrasound, according to the Richmond Times-Dispatch
. The state Senate bill sponsored by two GOP lawmakers cleared the Education and Health Committee last week on a narrow 8-7 vote along party lines, with all Democrats on the panel opposing it. It now moves to the full GOP-controlled Senate for consideration.
The Times-Dispatch said the vote by the committee marked “the most significant example to date of the impact of Republican control over the committee,” which had been controlled by the Democrats over the past four years.
The paper noted that Republican education and health panel members are planning to introduce other abortion measures this session, including a bill that would restrict abortions beyond 20 weeks.
Under current law, women seeking abortions may elect to have an ultrasound, but are not required or pressured to do so. That would change under the GOP measure sponsored by state Sens. Jill Holtzman Vogel and Ralph K. Smith.
Supporters of the measure described it as “a significant pro-life propsoal.”
“Giving a woman access to the most advanced medical technology available, including an ultrasound, can only ensure that her health is protected and that she can make her decision regarding an abortion with all the information available,” Victoria Cobb, president of the Family Foundation of Virginia, was quoted as saying.
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