SC House approves more abortion bills

COLUMBIA, S.C. (AP) — South Carolina legislators have approved a bill allowing health insurance companies to cover abortions only if people pay a separate premium for them.

The House approved the measure 69-41. Republican Rep. Greg Delleney of Chester says it’s about protecting the sanctity of life.

The bill would also protect the jobs of doctors who refuse to conduct procedures because of their personal beliefs. The expanded state law would cover things such as stem cell research.

Democrats say the separate premium idea is preposterous. They say women won’t know ahead of time whether they’ll be confronted with such a decision, especially in cases of rape.

Opponents say if the separate premium becomes law, insurers likely won’t offer coverage — and even if they did, women would be unlikely to ask for it.

(Copyright 2011 by The Associated Press.  All Rights Reserved.)