Morning headlines: Friday, May 13, 2011
So-called "Late-Term" Abortion Ban Goes to Governor Nixon
The bill passed Thursday by the Missouri House would ban abortions after 20 weeks unless two doctors verify that a fetus is not viable, or that it constitutes a medical threat to the mother. The bill's supporters call abortions performed on viable fetuses barbaric.
Democrat Tishaura Jones of St. Louis opposed the bill, saying she's pro-life for herself but pro-choice for everyone else:
"The state needs to get out of my belly, out of my uterus, because that's my decision between me, my God, and my doctor," said Jones.
But 17 Democrats joined Republicans in voting "yes."
Doctors who violate the proposed law would face at least a year in prison and fines ranging from $10 to $50-thousand.
Still No Agreements on a Number of Bills on Final Day of Session
Missouri lawmakers still haven't reached agreements on a number of bills as the final day of the 2011 session arrives.
House and Senate negotiators are still far apart on tax credit legislation, which includes the proposed Aerotropolis incentives for Lambert Airport in St. Louis.
Senate President Pro-tem Rob Mayer says as long as there's no deal there, the chances of passing the St. Louis Police local control bill fade even more:
"So we'll await the House to see if they want to negotiate in good faith on House Bill 116, and if not, I doubt whether we'll get around to local control," said Mayer.
Other bills still awaiting action include the nuclear plant site permit and a worker's comp fix that would bar employees from being sued by injured co-workers.
The 2011 legislative session ends tonight at 6 p.m.
Illinois School Support Drops Under Budget Plan
Illinois schools would see their support drop by $166 million under a budget plan making its way through the Legislature. That's about 2.3 percent less than schools get under the current state budget. The cuts were approved 102-12 Thursday by the Illinois House.
Piece by piece, the House is approving a state budget that would be about $1 billion below what was proposed by Gov. Pat Quinn. The Democratic governor says he opposes cutting education and vital human services.