6:13 PM UPDATE: The Senate study bill that bans abortions after the first sign of a heartbeat has passed through a Senate Judiciary Committee Monday night.
With a down-the-line party vote, the "heartbeat bill" passed the committee. The room where the meeting was held was packed with supporters and activists against the bill. Sen. Amy Sinclair, the bill's sponsor, said this bill was about protecting the lives of all Iowans.
"I had a choice 18 years ago," said Sinclair. "This bill is about protecting Iowa's most vulnerable."
Sen. Janet Peterson, a Democrat, spoke against the bill. She said it would make it unsafe for a woman to have an abortion, and that banning certain access to health care is unconstitutional.
Republicans in the senate say they're optimistic about the support they have for the heartbeat bill.
They said they know if it passes through the legislature and the governor signs it, it will mean a court battle all the way to the supreme court.
Senator Rick Bertrand said, "Any of us that are strong in the pro life movement understand that not only will this save lives, babies, the long goal is to throw this back into the courts and start the run at R V. Wade."
Democrats who oppose this bill say it takes away a woman's right to choose. And they also say it's yet another blow to women's healthcare in the state.
Senator Joe Bolkcom said, "I think it's a very extreme measure, it's unconstitutional, and I think it's going to be a big waste of money for Iowa taxpayers to defend this law down the road should it become part of state laws."
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