Bill would lift abortion restrictions around US

Senate Democrats reintroduced legislation Wednesday that would lift abortion restrictions around the United States, including bans on the procedure prior to viability and targeted regulation of abortion clinics.

The Women's Health Protection Act from Sens. Richard BlumenthalRichard BlumenthalElizabeth Warren joins House Dems' sit-in Democrats stage sit-in on House floor to push for gun vote Dems blast Republicans after failed gun votes MORE (D-Conn.) and Tammy BaldwinTammy BaldwinOvernight Finance: Wall Street awaits Brexit result | Clinton touts biz support | New threat to Puerto Rico bill? | Dodd, Frank hit back Dem hopeful that Congress will eliminate tax break for investment fund managers Congress should stop government hacking and protect the Fourth Amendment MORE (D-Wis.) is designed to comprehensively push back against a rising tide of anti-abortion-rights laws at the state level. Abortion-rights opponents previously called the measure "the most radical pro-abortion bill ever considered by Congress."

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"This historic legislation would put an end to this assault on women’s health and personal decisions," said Center for Reproductive Rights President Nancy Northup in a statement.

"The Women’s Health Protection Act will ensure that every woman in America can exercise her constitutional right to access safe, legal abortion care without interference from the devious tactics of politicians bent on substituting their judgment for hers."

The bill was re-introduced to coincide with the anniversary of the Roe v. Wade decision on Thursday. It also provides abortion-rights supporters with a counterpoint message ahead of the House's vote on a bill to ban abortions after 20 weeks.

That measure, from Rep. Trent FranksTrent FranksGOP rebuffs doctors on gun research House GOP considers options post-Orlando Indian leader touts US relations in Congress speech MORE (R-Ariz.), is due for a vote on Thursday.

The Women's Health Protection Act was previously introduced in 2013 and considered by the Senate Judiciary Committee in July 2014. It is unlikely to get a Senate hearing this Congress now that Republicans control the upper chamber.

The bill would prohibit state and federal lawmakers from imposing a variety of restrictions on abortion rights, including forced ultrasounds, waiting periods, admitting privileges requirements and limits on medication abortion.