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JEFFERSON CITY, Mo. — The Missouri Senate advanced a bill on Thursday that prohibits abortions at eight weeks or later, based on the machine-detectable presence of a heartbeat and brain waves at that stage, as well as other factors. According to the latest data on file with the state Department of Health, more than half of the unborn children killed in Missouri in 2017 were children under nine weeks gestation.
House Bill 126, also known as the “Missouri Stands for the Unborn Act,” passed early this morning with a vote of 24-10.
“Notwithstanding any other provision of law to the contrary, no abortion shall be performed or induced upon a woman at eight weeks gestational age or later, except in cases of medical emergency,” the legislation reads in part.
Those who perform an illegal abortion would be charged with a felony, except for that “[a] woman upon whom an abortion is performed or induced in violation of this subsection shall not be prosecuted for a conspiracy to violate the provisions of this section.”
The bill provides a lengthy explanation as to why it believes abortions should not be performed at or past the eight week mark.
“In medicine, a special emphasis is placed on the heartbeat. The heartbeat is a discernible sign of life at every stage of human existence. During the fifth week of gestational age, an unborn child’s heart begins to beat and blood flow begins during the sixth week,” it outlines.
“Depending on the ultrasound equipment being used, the unborn child’s heartbeat
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