The North Carolina Senate passed a bill Tuesday night that aims to restrict abortions by making it more difficult for doctors to perform the procedures.
The measure gained initial approval after it was unexpectedly introduced as an add-on to an unrelated bill that seeks to ban the state's courts from considering foreign laws. The Senate is set to vote on its final passage Wednesday, according to the Washington Post.
It would then move to the House.
If approved, the bill would require abortion clinics to meet license standards similar to those of ambulatory surgical centers. According to legislative staff, only one clinic in the state currently meets that standard. The bill would also require doctors to be present when women take drugs that induce abortions, NewsObserver.com reported.
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Under Roe v. Wade, states can't ban abortion outright, but they can make it more difficult for women to obtain one by targeting clinics and doctors with what are commonly called "TRAP" laws (Targeted Regulation of Abortion Providers).
The N.C. bill is just the latest in a string of restrictive abortion measures emerging in GOP-controlled states.
Last week, a Texas senator's filibuster helped stopped the passage of a similar restrictive abortion bill.
Texas SB 5 sought to virtually outlaw abortion in the state. It would force the closure of almost every abortion clinic, ban abortions after 20 weeks, require all abortion doctors to have admitting privileges at a hospital within 30 miles, and stipulate that all abortion clinics also qualify as ambulatory surgical centers.
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On Sunday, Republican Ohio Gov. John Kasich signed a measure into law that requires abortion providers to tell women if a fetus has a heartbeat and effectively cuts funding for Planned Parenthood, the Post reported.
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