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House committee OKs Texas abortion restrictions

Last Modified: Friday, June 21, 2013 2:29 PM

CHRIS TOMLINSON // American Press Associated Press

AUSTIN, Texas (AP) — A Texas House committee has approved new restrictions on abortions after cutting short an 11-hour hearing and denying hundreds of people the opportunity to testify against them.

House Affairs Committee Chairman Byron Cook held a meeting Friday to approve all of the measures, with Republicans voting for the measures and Democrats opposing. The vote came after hundreds of abortion rights supporters packed a hearing Thursday until 3:30 a.m. Friday morning.

Opponents hoped to stall the measures, but Cook cut off public testimony saying it was becoming repetitive. Houston Democrat Jessica Farrar said in 20 years she'd never seen a chairman cut short testimony.

The proposed laws would limit what clinics and doctors can perform abortions and ban them after 20 weeks instead of 24.

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