Abortion expansion passes Senate committee

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SPRINGFIELD, Ill. (WAND)- A controversial bill that would expand abortion coverage in the state has passed a Senate Human Services Committee.

HB40 has been creating a lot of attention, with over 2,000 people filing witness slips in the committee in support of the measure, and 64 people filing witness slips against it. The legislation would do two things, first, it would remove trigger language from the Illinois Abortion Law of 1975 that could make abortion illegal in the state if Roe v. Wade is overturned federally. Next, it would expand coverage of abortions to those on Medicaid and state employee health insurances.

Supporters of the bill say it is crucial to pass this legislation in order to ensure that abortions stay safe and legal to everyone in the state regardless of what happens federally. 

"I'm here to tell you that this bill is essential. That there is simply too much risk to women's health to leave this dangerous language in place, when our president has vowed to send Roe v. Wade to the ash heap of history." said Lorie Chaiten, Director of the Reproductive Rights Project at the Roger Baldwin Foundation at the ACLU.

Opponents say abortions in the state could never become illegal, and this is really about having taxpayer funded abortions.

The bill passed the Illinois House last month with a vote of 62-55. 

The measure passed on a party line vote of 6-4. It will now move to the Senate floor for a full vote.

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