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Utah House OKs ultrasounds before abortions

Published February 5, 2010 5:28 pm

This is an archived article that was published on sltrib.com in 2010, and information in the article may be outdated. It is provided only for personal research purposes and may not be reprinted.

A bill that would give a woman seeking an abortion the option to first view her ultrasound passed the Utah House on Friday.

Before HB200 cleared the chamber in a 53-15 vote, Minority Leader David Litvack, D-Salt Lake City, unsuccessfully attempted to amend the bill to delete language he believed to be flat-out false, referring to viewing the heartbeat of a fetus at three weeks.

"It is not medically accurate," Litvack said. "It's not possible. It does not exist."

Litvack read from a physician's e-mail that said you could expect to see embryonic cardiac activity at about six weeks from the woman's last period.

Rep. Carl Wimmer, the bill's sponsor, disputed Litvack's claim.

"There are arguments on both sides of the issue," Wimmer, R-Herriman, said.

Rep. Neil Hansen, D-Ogden, supported Litvack's amendment because of the added costs the bill would incur. Enactment of Wimmer's measure is projected to cost $7,000 in 2011, then $4,000 each year thereafter.

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