SC House debates heartbeat abortion bill unlikely to pass

COLUMBIA, S.C. (AP) — The South Carolina House is debating a bill that would ban almost all abortions once a fetal heartbeat can be detected.

But unlike efforts in other states, this ban has little chance of passing in 2019.

A fetal heartbeat typically can be detected around the sixth week of pregnancy, so early that many women aren’t yet aware they’re pregnant.

Proponents of the bill say all life should be considered sacred once a heartbeat can be detected.

Advocates on both sides expect Wednesday’s debate to be extensive. Supporters will need a simple majority vote from the House and a two-thirds vote from the less conservative Senate ahead of a legislative deadline.

Other states like Kentucky, Ohio, Georgia have passed heartbeat abortion bills this year.

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This story has been corrected to show that a simple majority vote from the House is required for the bill to pass.

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