The Florida House approved a bill that would require minors to obtain parental consent before having an abortion, the News Service of Florida reports.
After three hours of debating, lawmakers voted 69-44 to pass HB 1335.
An identical bill, SB 1774, is in the works but hasn’t come up for a vote on the Senate floor yet.
People who support opposite sides of the issue say the law, if passed, could be a test case for the Florida Supreme Court, which was overhauled in January when Republican Gov. Ron DeSantis appointed three justices who are more conservative than the justices they replaced.
Under current state law, parents must be told if their daughters are planning to have abortions but the bill would make parental consent required.
Minors with health emergencies or those who already have children would be exempt from the bill.
Bill sponsor Erin Grall, R-Vero Beach, argued that parents should be involved in helping minors make decisions about abortions as a parental rights measure.
Not everyone agrees.
Rep. Susan Valdes, D-Tampa, said the proposal “attacks” girls and women.
“I see nowhere in this bill where we discuss the responsibility of the male. How will the parents of the male be involved in this?” Valdes asked.
Grall replied: “Unfortunately, the parents of the male will not be involved in this.”
Rep. Tommy Gregory, R-Sarasota, thanked Grall for her “brave leadership,” in bringing the bill forward.
“These are serious decisions we are allowing minor children to make without their parents. And that should not be the law in the state of Florida,” he said.
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Laura Jazmin Tolliver is a digital reporter for GateHouse Media Group’s Florida team, based in West Palm Beach, Fla. Jaz’s stories, which run across digital, print and video platforms, are syndicated across the 22 Florida newspaper markets.