House passes far-reaching anti-abortion bill

WASHINGTON - The Republican-led House has passed a far-reaching anti-abortion bill, giving conservatives a claim to progress in their campaign against legal abortions and Democrats another reason to claim that the Republican agenda is anti-women.

The measure to restrict abortions to the first 20 weeks after conception has no future in the Democratic-led Senate and the White House has issued a veto threat. But it could still exert influence, both in next year's GOP primaries and in future court battles challenging the 1973 Supreme Court decision affirming a woman's right to end a pregnancy.

The House bill mirrors 20-week abortion bans laws passed by some 10 states. Most states allow abortions up to when a fetus becomes viable, generally considered to be around 24 weeks after conception.

The bill passed 228-196.

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