Senate panel OKs ban on second-trimester abortion procedure

(AP Photo/Michael Conroy, File)

INDIANAPOLIS (AP) — An Indiana Senate panel is backing legislation that would largely ban a commonly used second-trimester abortion procedure.

The Senate Judiciary Committee voted 7-3 Wednesday in favor of the bill, which now heads to the full Republican-dominated Senate.

The measure would ban dilation and evacuation abortions that the legislation calls “dismemberment abortion.” It would make it illegal for doctors to use instruments such as clamps, forceps and scissors to remove a fetus from the womb unless there’s “serious risk of substantial and irreversible physical impairment of a major bodily function” to the woman.

Doing so would become a felony punishable by one to six years in prison.

Abortion rights groups argue that banning the procedure would wrongly interfere with private medical decisions.

The House approved the bill in February on a 71-25 vote.

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