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Anti-abortion bill put on hold as lawmaker proposes study committee

A Paradise Valley Democrat introduced a floor amendment Tuesday that would eradicate an anti-abortion bill.

The House postponed action on SB1069 after Rep. Eric Meyer introduced a proposal to create a study committee that would examine whether abortion clinics are in compliance with state regulations. The amendment would strip away provisions to allow state health inspectors to look over abortion clinics without a search warrant. It would also prohibit Medicaid patients from getting abortions at clinics where they receive other services, and ban abortion providers from using Medicaid funds for abortion services.

Cathi Herrod, president of the Center for Arizona Policy, said she is worried the amendment could pass after nine House Republicans bucked party leadership and joined Democrats to beat back hostile amendments to a school bonding bill on Monday.

The bipartisan coalition, which is focused on Medicaid expansion, passed the measure 31-26. While the school bill had nothing to do with Medicaid, it is sponsored by Rep. Heather Carter, R-Cave Creek, who will take charge of Gov. Jan Brewer’s expansion plan if it is revived in the House.

“No one who considers himself pro-life should vote yes on the Meyer amendment,” Herrod said.

She said there is no need for a study on the compliance of abortion regulations because a recently published undercover video shows what occurs in the clinics.

Meyer was not immediately available for comment.

SB1069 was introduced as a striker amendment last week and passed the House Appropriations Committee Monday on a party-line 7-4 vote. Under current law, Arizona health inspectors cannot conduct surprise inspections of abortion clinics without first getting an administrative search warrant.

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