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Congress Passes Abortion Provision

Congress has approved a $388 billion spending bill that includes a provision forbidding federal,state or local government agencies from requiring health care providers to offer abortion services.

With bipartisan votes of 344-51 in the House and 65-30 in the Senate, the bill was considered a "must pass" because it provides funding to government agencies through Sept. 30, 2005.

Other abortion measures now being considered in Congress are the Child Custody Protection Act, which would make it a federal crime to take a minor across state lines for an abortion without parental notifications, and the Unborn Child Pain Awareness Act, which would require doctors to tell women seeking an abortion after 20 weeks about potential pain to the fetus and require women to sidn a consent form to accept or refuse a pain-relieveing drug for the fetus,  THe latter uses the words "unborn child" instead of "fetus" throughout the bill."