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Democrats pass 3 bills strengthening abortion rights in Colorado, sending them to governor

A trio of bills seeking to bolster abortion rights in Colorado passed their last vote in the House on Saturday, now only needing the governor’s signature to become law. 

If enacted, Senate Bill 188 would protect abortion patients and providers in Colorado from penalties from other states. Senate Bill 189 would expand health insurance coverage for abortion, particularly among carriers that serve large employers. Lastly, Senate Bill 190 would prohibit deceptive advertising and the use of abortion “reversal” pills in crisis pregnancy centers. 

After three days of debate, the bills passed the House mostly along party lines. 

SB 188 passed in a vote of 42-18, with five lawmakers absent, all Republicans in opposition and all Democrats in support. The votes were similar for SB 189 and SB 190, but Democrat Rep. Bob Marshall of Highlands Ranch joined his Republican colleagues in voting “no.” Marshall represents a district that has never before elected a Democrat and called himself “personally pro-life” on the campaign trail last year. 

Last week, the Senate approved the bills in similar votes: 22-13 for all three bills, with all Republicans voting “no” and all Democrats voting “yes,” except for Sen. Kevin Priola, D-Henderson, who switched parties last year. 

SB 190 will be sent straight to Gov. Jared Polis’s desk for final consideration. SB 188 and SB 189 will go back to the Senate to approve changes made by the House, and then to Polis. 

If signed by the governor, all three bills would take effect immediately. 

The bills are the first legislative action Colorado lawmakers have taken up on the subject since the Supreme Court overturned national abortion protections in the Dobbs v. Jackson Women’s Health Organization ruling last year. Two months before the ruling, state lawmakers enshrined abortion as a fundamental right with the Reproductive Health Equity Act

For more information about each bill and the respective House debates, check out these articles: 

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