RALEIGH, NC (AP) — North Carolina Republican lawmakers on Thursday implemented adjustments to the New restrictions on abortion in the state that will enter into force in days, addressing some provisions that litigation seeking to block law enforcement confused and inconsistent calls.

Republican senators said the changes offered in the Senate were small, designed to affirm the intent of the measure signed into law last month on Democratic Governor Roy Cooper’s veto which in part would ban almost all abortions after 12 weeks of pregnancy as of July 1.

“We see it very much as technical and insightful,” Sen. Ralph Hise, a Mitchell County Republican, told reporters after the Senate voted in favor of the abortion alterations, added to another pending bill from the state health agency. “It doesn’t make substantial changes.”

But the language appears intended to thwart a federal lawsuit filed last week by Planned Parenthood South Atlantic and an abortion doctor seeking to declare all or part of the abortion law enacted unconstitutional. The litigation accelerated Wednesday when the defendants formally asked to block the law’s application well in advance, before any potential trial. US District Judge Catherine Eagles scheduled a hearing for next week.

The lawsuit cited several requirements in the new abortion law that it claims are “unintelligible, inherently contradictory, unreasonable, and/or unconstitutional in every part of the abortion process.”

Thursday’s legislation, which was introduced to the full Senate with little procedural notice, speaks to many of those provisions. For example, the bill clarifies that medical abortions are also allowed up to 12 weeks into the pregnancy and not 10 weeks, as critics argue that the new abortion law seems to suggest.

Thursday’s bill also makes it clear that it would not be illegal for someone to help a woman obtain an abortion outside of North Carolina in states where the procedure would remain legal, and that a legal abortion is an exception to the murder statute. fetal North Carolina.

Senate Democrats who vehemently opposed the new abortion law this spring said Thursday’s changes could have been avoided if Republicans hadn’t rushed through the underlying abortion changes three days in May. Now pending litigation is forcing them to act to try to fix the problems, said Sen. Sydney Batch, D-Wake County.

“If I were on his side, I would absolutely do this,” Batch said, adding that the language is an “admission that there is actually ambiguity.”

All Democrats in attendance Thursday afternoon voted against the bill, which will need one more affirmative vote next week before moving to the House for consideration. This measure, like the new abortion law, would be subject to Cooper’s veto seal. Republican lawmakers hold veto-proof majorities in both chambers.

The North Carolina Obstetrics and Gynecology Society, which opposed the new abortion law, said in a statement Thursday that it appreciated lawmakers’ willingness to clarify the rules on medical abortions.

The abortion law of July 1 it will change existing rules for North Carolina that ban nearly all abortions after 20 weeks of pregnancy, with no exceptions for rape or incest. It also adds exceptions, extending the limit to 20 weeks for rape and incest and to 24 weeks for “life-limiting” fetal anomalies.

Abortion rights advocates say other new rules on patients and providers will make it even harder for poor or rural residents to get abortions and could force some abortion clinics to close. Supporters of the new law see the 12-week limit with exceptions as a happy medium in one of the few southern states with relatively easy access to abortion after last year’s law. US Supreme Court decision reversing the Roe v. Wade.

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