COLUMBIA, S.C. (AP) – The South Carolina Senate has cleared the way for a bill banning abortion past 19 weeks to become law.
The Senate approved legislation 36-9 Tuesday that allows exceptions only if the mother’s life is in jeopardy or a doctor determines the fetus can’t survive outside the womb.
The measure’s limited definition of “fetal anomaly” means it would be illegal to abort a fetus with a severe disability if the child could live.
There are no exceptions for rape or incest.
Senate Democrats blocked the legislation for years.
Supporters believe the ban is needed, stating a fetus can feel pain at 20 weeks. Opponents argue such abortions involve wanted pregnancies that go horribly wrong, and that’s not for politicians to decide.
A final vote in the House would send it to Governor Nikki Haley’s desk.