The Missouri state Senate passed a bill this morning in a 25 to 7 vote that will expand restrictions on abortion access in the state. The bill would require women who are seeking an abortion to be informed of certain information in person 24 hours prior to the procedure, according to NPR. The required information includes a description of the procedure and associated health risks, a description of fetal development, information on possible fetal pain after 22 weeks gestation, information on options other than abortion, and an offer to show the patient ultrasound images and make the heartbeat audible, reported the Kansas City Star.
A different version of the bill has already been approved by the state House. According to the Associated Press, the House must pass the Senate version of the bill by 6pm Friday, the end of the 2009 legislative session, in order for the bill to go to Governor Jay Nixon for approval. It is unclear whether the Governor will sign the legislation.
Democratic Missouri state senators filibustered the bill for weeks before agreeing to a compromise. Republican leadership had threatened to force a vote on an earlier version of the bill that would have made coercing an abortion a crime, according to the St. Louis Dispatch.