Sen. Marco Rubio has agreed to sponsor a federal bill to ban abortion after 20 weeks, after right-to-life groups urged the Florida lawmaker to take the lead on the issue.
The freshman senator and likely candidate for the 2016 GOP presidential nomination, has yet to announce his intention to introduce the measure, but according to The Weekly Standard
, several sources have confirmed he has agreed to take the lead and will likely announce his sponsorship for the bill after the July 4 congressional recess.
A similar measure was passed
in the House on June 18 with a significant majority, but a Senate bill has little chance of passing the Democrat-controlled chamber and a likely veto by President Barack Obama.
Pro-life groups believe that regardless of the bill's ultimate success, it will be a significant win for the movement if the 20-week ban issue is elevated to the national political agenda. They are also hoping it could be significant vote-winner for Republicans in the 2014 midterm elections.
Most states allow abortion up to 24 weeks into a pregnancy, though between 2010 and 2012, nine states passed laws banning abortion after 20 weeks, and 21 states introduced a total of 45 similar abortion-ban measures in the last two years, according to an online factsheet prepared by NARAL Pro-Choice America.
The 20-week ban is expected to be passed in Texas this month
after Governor Rick Perry vowed to resurrect it when it failed due to a filibuster by Democratic state Sen. Wendy Davis on June 25.
Recent polls indicate that Americans are largely in favor of banning abortion in the last three months of pregnancy. A January Gallup survey
found that 64 percent of Americans think abortion in the second three months of pregnancy should be illegal.
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