Florida House Passes Ban On Abortions After 15-Weeks, Bill Heads To Senate

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Mary Rooke Commentary and Analysis Writer
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Florida’s House of Representatives passed legislation Wednesday seeking to ban abortions after 15 weeks of pregnancy.

After the Republican majority in Florida’s state House passed the abortion ban with a 78-39 vote, it was sent to the state Senate for consideration, which has signaled it will also pass the bill, according to a Reuters report.

House Bill 5 — now Senate Bill 146 — seeks to reduce the fetal and infant mortality rate by prohibiting doctors from performing “a termination of pregnancy” if the fetus’ gestational age is older than 15 weeks, according to the bill’s summary.

Florida law currently allows a mother to get an abortion until the third trimester — about 24 weeks of pregnancy — and completed roughly 75,000 abortions in 2021 alone, the Tampa Bay Times reported.

Republican Florida state Sen. Kelli Stargel supported the legislation and denounced the characterization that the bill is “an all-out ban,” according to the Tampa Bay Times. “An individual has the (ability) to make a decision of what they want to do with their pregnancy prior to the 15 weeks,” she said in a February Senate committee meeting.

Florida’s Senate bill does allow exceptions to the ban. However, it requires “the directors of certain medical facilities and certain physicians to submit a certain report to the Agency for Health Care Administration monthly,” according to the bill’s summary.

“This is the right to life and to give up life is unconscionable to me,” said Republican state Rep. Dana Trabulsy while defending the bill, reported Fox News. Trabulsy said she once had an abortion and has “regretted it every day since.”