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Florida House votes to require parental consent for minors to obtain abortions

A controversial bill passed by the Florida House Wednesday could require minors to have the consent of their parents or guardians before they can have abortions, though the bill has yet to clear several hurdles in the Senate to pass in the final weeks of session.

House lawmakers, after 3 1/2 hours of heated debate tinged with personal anecdotes and references to the Bible, voted for the bill 69-44 largely along party lines. The legislation would add to an existing requirement that minors notify their parents or guardians before an abortion or obtain a judicial waiver that would let them bypass the requirement.

Critics have said HB 1335, which is the most substantial change to abortion law the House has heard this session, is an attempt to rekindle a judicial fight before a more conservative state Supreme Court shaped by Gov. Ron DeSantis. But advocates have framed the legislation, along with a handful of other bills broadening “parental rights,” as an effort to strengthen families and ensure abortions are done more safely.

“It is my belief the parent needs to be involved in the decision-making of the child,” sponsor Rep. Erin Grall, R-Vero Beach, told fellow lawmakers Wednesday.

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