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Kansas bill tightens late-term abortions

March 31, 2010 at 8:15 AM
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TOPEKA, Mo., March 31 (UPI) -- Kansas Gov. Mark Parkinson has yet to say whether he'll veto a bill that tightens state law against late-term abortions.

The bill passed by the Legislature late Tuesday was aimed at keeping a late-term abortion provider from opening a clinic in the state, supporters of the law said.

The law passed short of the votes needed to prevent Parkinson, a Democrat and an abortion-rights supporter, from vetoing it.

Under the law, patients or their relatives could sue a doctor if they had evidence an abortion violated state law, The Wichita Eagle reported Wednesday.

Doctors would be required to provide a medical diagnosis to justify abortions performed after 21 weeks of pregnancy and involving fetuses considered viable.

The bill defined a viable fetus as one in which there was a "reasonable probability that the life of the child can be continued indefinitely outside the mother's womb with natural or artificial life-supportive measures."

Kansas has been without a late-term abortion provider since the killing last May of Dr. George Tiller by anti-abortion activist Scott Roeder, who was convicted of murder.

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