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Group backs initiative for Michigan abortion ban after 1st heartbeat

Posted: 12:06 PM, May 21, 2019
Updated: 2019-05-21 12:06:36-04

LANSING, Mich. (AP) — A Michigan group is launching a ballot drive to ban abortions after a fetus’s heartbeat is detected, with exceptions to protect a pregnant woman’s life or health.

The Michigan Heartbeat Coalition filed its initiative wording Tuesday. It’s the second ballot committee to push an anti-abortion measure, following a Right to Life-backed group that’s seeking to prohibit a second-trimester abortion procedure.

A fetal heartbeat can be detected at six weeks.

If roughly 340,000 valid signatures are gathered, the heartbeat initiative will go to the Republican-led Legislature. It could enact it or allow a statewide vote.

Anti-abortion activists disagree over the latest initiative.

Proponents say it’d protect more lives, while Right to Life worries the measure could interfere with an abortion ban already on the books if Roe v. Wade is overturned.