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Abortion debate highlights divide in Democrat-led states



In this Thursday, May 23, 2019, photo, Nancy St Germain, 71, right, of Warwick, R.I., leans forward to show her sign to a driver leaving a fundraiser for the Rhode Island Senate Democrats political action committee in Providence, R.I. Her sign reads, "This fight isn't over." Protesters gathered at the fundraiser to pressure legislative leaders to bring a bill seeking to protect abortion rights to the Senate floor for a vote. (AP Photo/Jennifer McDermott)



A bill seeking to preserve abortion protections in state law fails to pass a key committee. Lawmakers cite God, church and faith in proclaiming their opposition to it. Abortion-rights groups protest outside a gathering of lawmakers.


What sounds like a legislative fight in a state controlled by anti-abortion Republicans is actually quite different.


The bill seeking to protect abortion rights is in Rhode Island, a state controlled by Democrats at all levels of political power, and it’s stalled.


“This is an issue, I think, where it’s very difficult to draw a line down party lines,” said Democratic state Sen. Erin Lynch Prata, a committee chairwoman who voted in favor of the bill. “It’s a very personal issue to a lot of people.”



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