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House passes bill to bar federal funds for abortion

The House has passed legislation that would permanently prohibit federal funds from being used to pay for almost all abortions. 

The legislation will almost certainly be ignored by the Democratic-controlled Senate, and President Barack Obama has said that he would veto the bill if it got to his desk. 

The “No Taxpayer Funding for Abortions Act” would specifically prohibit health care subsidies from the Affordable Care Act from being used to pay for health care plans that cover abortions. 

The vote was 227 to 188, with one member voting present.

Federal funds are already restricted from being used to pay for abortions since 1976 by the Hyde Amendment, so what this bill effectively does is write restrictions permanently into law rather than require lawmakers to insert them into each year’s appropriations bills.

The legislation would have an exception for cases of pregnancy as a result of rape or incest, as well as "in the case where a woman suffers from a physical disorder, physical injury, or physical illness that would, as certified by a physician, place the woman in danger of death unless an abortion is performed, including a life-endangering physical condition caused by or arising from the pregnancy."