Senate panel OKs ultrasound abortion measure 

A Senate committee where abortion restrictions once died has advanced a bill that would force pregnant women to view ultrasound images of their fetuses before having an abortion.

The Senate Education and Health Committee's Republican majority advanced the bill to the Senate floor on a party line 8-7 vote Thursday.

The bill has been before the General Assembly for years, winning passage in the House which has been under unbroken GOP rule since 2000, but failing to clear the Education and Health panel for a floor vote, even when Republicans ruled the Senate.

That changed after Republicans gained two seats, forged a 20-20 tie, then used Republican Lt. Gov. Bill Bolling's decisive vote to claim a Senate majority and the right to dominate its committees with Republican conservatives.

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