Published On: Apr 03 2013 07:01:28 PM EDT

BC-FL-XGR--Abortion,127
Fla. House panel OKs abortion bill
Eds: APNewsNow. Will be updated.
   TALLAHASSEE, Fla. (AP) -- The abortion debate reignited in a divided Florida House panel that approved a bill to ban sex- and race-selective abortions.
   Supporters said Wednesday the measure seeks to prevent "prenatal discrimination" by prohibiting abortions motivated by the gender or race of an unborn child.
   Opponents called it an unwarranted intrusion into a woman's decision and into the doctor-patient relationship.
   The bill (HB 845) would require abortion providers to sign an affidavit stating they had no knowledge the procedure was done based on the unborn child's sex or race. Providers would face a $10,000 fine for failing to report such abortions.
   The measure won narrow approval from the House Judiciary Committee after a lengthy debate.
   Rep. Charles Van Zant, R-Keystone Heights, says sex-and race-selective abortions are becoming more prevalent.
   AP-WF-04-03-13 1602GMT

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