House passes 20-week abortion ban 228-196

A bill that would ban abortions after 20 weeks of pregnancy passed in the House of Representatives on Tuesday, with 228 members voting for it and 196 members voting against it.

The bill will now go to the Senate, where it is not expected to pass.

The vote was mostly along party lines, with half a dozen Republicans voting with Democrats against it and another six Democrats voting with Republicans in its favor.

The six Democratic crossovers were Reps. Henry Cuellar (Texas), Dan Lipinski (Ill.), Jim Matheson (Utah), Mike McIntyre (N.C.), Collin Peterson (Minn.)and Nick Rahall (W.Va.).

The six GOP crossovers were Reps. Rodney Frelinghuysen (N.J.), Richard Hanna (N.Y.), Jon Runyan (N.J.), Rob Woodall (Ga.), Charlie Dent (Pa.) and Paul Broun (Ga.).

Broun, notably, is running for Georgia's open Senate seat, in which he faces other conservatives in the GOP primary. He removed himself as a co-sponsor of the bill when exceptions were added for rape and incest.

The measure, which was authored by Rep. Trent Franks (R-Ariz.), made its way into the news last week after Franks said at a hearing that the "incidence of rape resulting in pregnancy are very low."

Franks soon clarified the remarks, saying he was referring only to women seeking abortions in the sixth month of pregnancy -- the subject of the bill's prohibition.

Soon, GOP leaders quietly added the exceptions for cases of rape and incest -- which the House Judiciary Committee had voted down -- and Rep. Marsha Blackburn (R-Tenn.) took over spearheading the bill's passage.

Republicans pushed hard for the bill, saying they were motivated by the conviction of Philadelphia abortion doctor Kermit Gosnell.

A similar version of the bill that applied only to Washington, D.C., was brought up in 2012. It got 220 'yes' votes and 154 'no' votes, with 55 members not voting. But because it was brought up under special circumstances, the bill required a two-thirds majority -- which it didn't achieve.

Aaron Blake covers national politics and writes regularly for The Fix, the Post’s top political blog.
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Aaron Blake | June 18, 2013