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House Speaker: No Mandatory Vaginal Ultrasounds

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LANSING (AP) – A bill that would have required women to undergo vaginal ultrasound examinations before they get abortions won’t continue through the House, the chamber’s Republican speaker said Thursday.

Rep. Jase Bolger of Marshall issued a statement after introduction of a bill to mandate pre-abortion ultrasound examinations with the most sophisticated equipment available. The measure is House Bill 4187.

“While I want to be sure women have access to the best technology available, I have absolutely no interest in forcing a woman to have a transvaginal ultrasound,” Bolger said. “This House of Representatives will not pass a bill mandating transvaginal ultrasounds.”

Bolger said he wants to “increase the value of life in Michigan” through better prenatal care, support for women with unplanned pregnancies and better adoption procedures.

Similar legislation has failed before.

A spokeswoman for Rep. Tim Greimel, leader of minority Democrats in the House, praised Bolger’s statement.

“Greimel commends the speaker for standing up to the extremist right-wing members of his caucus and rejecting this proposal to force women to undergo an invasive procedure that is unnecessary and unwarranted,” Katie Carey, Greimel’s press secretary, said.

Another anti-abortion measure is before the Republican-led state Senate. It would prohibit insurers from funding abortions under plans provided by businesses and organizations, but would permit elective abortion coverage. The measure is Senate Bill 138.

In December, Republican Gov. Rick Snyder vetoed an overhaul of Blue Cross Blue Shield of Michigan because of an anti-abortion provision. Another effort to pass the overhaul without the anti-abortion clause is under way.

(© Copyright 2013 The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.)

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