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State lawmaker’s anti-abortion bill mirrors new Texas law

JEFFERSON CITY (AP) — A Republican state representative has introduced legislation that would ban nearly all abortions in Missouri, mirroring a new Texas law.

The bill introduced Thursday by state Rep. Mary Elizabeth Coleman of Arnold would prohibit the termination of a pregnancy once cardiac activity is detected in an embryo, usually around six weeks and before some women are aware they are pregnant.

Her proposal would allow private citizens to sue clinics, doctors and anyone else who facilitates an abortion after the cardiac activity is detected. It also would further limit funding to the state’s only abortion provider, Planned Parenthood. Missouri’s lone abortion clinic is the one at 4251 Forest Park Avenue in St. Louis.

Coleman’s legislation is among at least 17 bills aiming to restrict or ban abortion filed in the run-up to the beginning of Missouri’s annual legislative session in January.

Maggie Olivia, policy manager for Pro Choice Missouri, said Coleman and other “extremist politicians” were “willing to sacrifice the will of the people, and the lives of the people, to fundraise off of extremist ideological agendas to retain and further their own political power.”

Coleman is running for state Senate in 2022.

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