The American Civil Liberties Union on Tuesday blasted members of the House of Representatives who voted in favor of ban most abortions after 20 weeks of pregnancy.


"A woman shouldn't be denied basic health care or the ability to make the best decision for her family just because some members of Congress want to impose their political views on her decision," said Laura W. Murphy, director of the American Civil Liberties Union Washington Legislative Office. "Today's vote is part of a wave of ever-more extreme legislation in the states and in Congress that interferes with a woman's ability to make personal and private medical decisions. This ban shamefully plays politics with women's health and has no place in our laws."

The Pain Capable Unborn Child Protection Act was passed Tuesday by a mostly party-line 228-196 vote in the House. Only six Democrats voted in favor of the legislation, while 6 Republicans opposed it.

The bill contained exceptions for rape and incest. The legislation would also have permitted abortion to save the life of the mother. Democrats, however, said the exceptions were narrowly written and would prove problematic if implemented.

The vote was mostly a symbolic action. The Democrat-led Senate is unlikely to consider the bill, which critics have claimed is unconstitutional.

The U.S. Court of Appeals for the 9th Circuit ruled last month that a similar 20-week abortion ban in Arizona was unconstitutional because of the Supreme Court's ruling in Roe v. Wade.

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