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W.Va. Panel Advances Proposed Abortion Amendment

Senate Judiciary Committee, May 2017.
Perry Bennett
West Virginia Legislative Photography
Senate Judiciary Committee, May 2017.

A West Virginia legislative committee has advanced a proposed amendment to the state constitution that would authorize lawmakers to restrict abortion rights.

The resolution, approved by the Senate Judiciary Committee by voice vote, would require two-thirds passage by both the Senate and House and a voter referendum to take effect.

It was approved Monday, when abortion opponents were rallying at the Capitol.

The U.S. Supreme Court in 1973 upheld women's constitutional rights to abortion.

The resolution says: "Nothing in this Constitution secures or protects a right to abortion or requires the funding of an abortion."

In January, a federal appeals court ruled that Tennessee won't have to recount votes on a similar constitutional amendment passed in 2014.

A West Virginia House committee held a hearing Monday on barring Medicaid-funded abortions.

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