Iowa Lawmakers Push Late-Term Abortion Bill

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Pro-life lawmakers in Iowa are working to keep late-term abortionist Leroy Carhart out of their state.

The Nebraska abortionist announced last fall that he would like to cross state lines and open a clinic in Council Bluffs. The facility would perform abortions after 20 weeks of pregnancy.

In response, Iowa lawmakers are considering a bill that would outlaw abortion after 20 weeks, effectively banning Carhart from practicing in the state.

"I don't know of a person who can stand, without feeling very emotional, listening to a description of late-term abortion. It's a very grisly, horrendous procedure and it doesn't need to happen," Sen. Dave Johnson, R-State Dist. 3, said.

So far, pro-life lawmakers in the Iowa House have had trouble finding support to pass the measure quickly.

Iowa House Speaker Kraig Paulsen transferred the bill that would ban so-called "late term" abortions to another committee after key Republicans on the House Human Resources Committee refused to support the bill.

"That's an important bill to Iowans. It addresses the situation in Council Bluffs with Dr. Carhart and late-term abortions," Paulsen told RadioIowa.

"And right, wrong or indifferent, the Human Resources Committee had failed to come to resolution yet on what to do with that. And, like I say, it's an important bill to Iowans," he continued. "And I put it in a committee that I think they'll reach a quicker resolution and if they don't, it's funnel proof."

The "funnel" Paulsen refers to is a deadline that according to Iowa law must be met. If the measure doesn't clear a committee by March 4, the bill is considered dead for the year.

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