The Virginia General Assembly has approved a watered-down version of a controversial bill requiring women to have an ultrasound before undergoing an abortion. The measure now goes to Gov. Bob McDonnell for his signature.
The bill had initially required transvaginal ultrasounds before all abortions, including those that result from rape or incest, but was amended at McDonnell’s urging to require only externally administered ultrasounds.
The Virginia Senate passed the new version of the bill last week and included an additional amendment exempting women whose pregnancy was the result of rape or incest, provided the assault was reported to police. That bill passed the Republican-controlled House of Delegates on Thursday by a vote of 61-35.
The bill’s sponsor, Del. Kathy Byron, a Republican, says the bill ensures that women are informed about pregnancies before they have an abortion, according to the Associated Press.