Iowa committee OKs 20-week abortion ban, ‘personhood bill’ fails

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Ultrasound or sonogram of baby (ThinkStock)

DES MOINES, Iowa — A Senate committee in the Iowa Legislature has approved a bill that would ban most abortions in the state after 20 weeks of pregnancy.

The Senate Human Resources Committee voted 9-3 in support of the measure. It’s now available for debate on the Senate floor.

The proposal advanced beyond a legislative procedural deadline this week that stopped a separate personhood bill from moving forward. That bill would have determined that life begins at conception and would have essentially banned abortion. It likely would have faced legal challenges.

The 20-week ban would include some exemptions. A pregnancy between 20 and 24 weeks could be terminated if the fetus had a fatal condition.