OLYMPIA, Wash. (AP) -- A majority of Washington state Senators have signed a letter supporting a measure requiring insurers to cover abortion.
The letter was presented Monday at a packed Senate hearing committee where the bill was debated. Afterward, bill supporters said they expected it would not pass out of the committee.
The measure was passed by the House in February. Gov. Jay Inslee, a bill supporter, has urged the Senate to vote on it.
Those supporting the measure say it would ensure continued abortion coverage once federal health care reforms taking effect next year trigger bureaucratic hurdles for insurers paying for the procedure.
Opponents say that abortion insurance coverage is already widespread and that the bill is unnecessary. They also contend the measure threatens the religious freedoms of those who oppose abortion rights.