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Fate Of Abortion Coverage Bill Uncertain In Washington Senate

OLYMPIA, Wash. ? A bill to require insurance companies to offer plans that cover maternity services and abortions passed the Washington House Friday. It is unclear, however, whether the legislation will make it through the Senate’s Republican-majority caucus. Majority Leader Rodney Tom has said he doesn’t want to vote on divisive social issues.

In the House debate, Rep. Laurie Jinkins said this bill would provide options for abortion coverage after the Affordable Care Act is fully implemented.

“I think that not adopting this bill now, today, has the potential to have disastrous consequences.”

Rep. Norma Smith spoke against the abortion coverage requirement, saying “I want the choice to have a carrier that may align themselves with my core values.”

This bill is a priority for Gov. Jay Inslee who says he wants to sign it into law before the end of the session.

On the Web:

HB 1044: Health plan coverage for abortions - Washington Legislature