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Washington Lawmakers Consider Bills From Opposite Sides Of Abortion Debate

OLYMPIA, Wash. – Public hearings are scheduled in Olympia for two bills that come from opposite ends of the abortion debate. Thursday, lawmakers will take public comment on a bill known as the Reproductive Parity Act. It would require insurance companies that cover maternity services to also pay for legal abortions.

Democrat Rodney Tom says abortion-related measures should not distract the Senate Majority Coalition he leads from its goals of balancing the budget, creating jobs and funding education.

“Everybody in the coalition recognizes that when it comes to issues, we’re going to be very focused and not let issues divide us.”

Next week, Washington lawmakers will look at a bill from Republicans in the state Senate, requiring a parent to be notified before a girl under 18 receives an abortion.