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Colorado House debates bill to enshrine abortion right in state law

As of Saturday, the House is entering its 20th hour, likely a state record, in debating the proposal to enshrine the unequivocal right to an abortion in state law.

DENVER — As of 7 a.m. Saturday, the House is entering its 20th hour, likely a state record, in debating the proposal to enshrine the unequivocal right to an abortion in state law.    

House Bill 1279, known as the Reproductive Health Equity Act, would establish a fundamental right to continue a pregnancy and give birth, or to have an abortion. The bill also says fertilized eggs, embryos and fetuses do not have independent rights under the law. The bill would also prohibit state and local public entities from denying or restricting an individual's right to use or refuse contraception, or to either continue a pregnancy or have an abortion.

The bill is prompted in part by the U.S. Supreme Court's pending decisions, expected in June, in two challenges to anti-abortion laws in Mississippi and Texas. 

Rep. Susan Lontine, D-Denver, who chaired the House Health & Insurance Committee's 14-hour marathon hearing that ended just after 3:30 a.m. Thursday, said during Friday's debate that the "hostile environment created by politicians across our country is the very reason why House Bill 1279 is so important.

"This is about protecting the rights of bodily autonomy because my body, the bodies of our daughters, belong to us, not the government," she said.

>Read the full article at Colorado Politics.

RELATED: Justices signal they'll approve new abortion limits, may toss Roe v. Wade

RELATED: Bill to protect abortion rights wins approval from Democratic-controlled House panel

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