Abortion bills go to governor’s desk after Senate approval

Published 7:57 am Friday, May 5, 2017

ST. PAUL — Two abortion bills are on Democratic Gov. Mark Dayton’s desk after the Senate voted to restrict the use of state funds for abortions and create a permitting system for facilities.

The bills both passed the Republican-controlled chamber Thursday by a vote of 35-29, mostly along party lines. The House approved similar bills last week.

Dayton vetoed similar legislation in 2012 and said earlier in session that he would oppose bills that limit women’s access to abortions.

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Republicans say Minnesota residents shouldn’t have to pay for a procedure they don’t support. And they say the permitting process, which would require facilities to seek permits from the state health department, would make facilities safer.

Democrats say the bills are aimed at making it more difficult to get abortions.