TALLAHASSEE (CBSMiami.com) – While hundreds of thousands of Floridians remain out of work, and the state’s infrastructure continues to crumble; the Florida House has approved a large number of abortion restrictions including an amendment requiring that women undergo ultrasounds before they can have an abortion.

“I think the voters in Florida were tricked,” said Howard Simon the Executive Director of the American Civil Liberties Union of Florida. “They hired on this crew in the November election to do a restricted number of things: cut our taxes, create jobs, slash the Florida budget none of that has occurred and what is about to occur is the biggest expansion of government into the personal lives mostly of women in Florida.”

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The House took up five bills Tuesday that targeted items including: insurance coverage for abortions, teen abortions, state funding of abortions and clinic ownership, and change how money is used from the “Choose Life” license plate.

“This is an exciting time for us because we do have a governor that is very saying very much so he’s pro life,” said Barbara Groeber, the education coordinator for Respect Life Ministries.

Democrats called the bills as “anti-women and anti-female.” Republicans countered that it’s about life, not about being anti-women.

The bills being analyzed by the House includes:

  • HB 1127 – would require ultrasounds before women can have first-trimester abortions. A similar requirement is in place for later-term abortions. Former Governor Charlie Crist vetoed the same bill last year.
  • HB 97 – would prevent abortion coverage in policies that will be sold through a state health insurance exchange, required under the new federal health care law.
  • HJR 1179 – proposed state constitutional amendment stating public funds could not be used to pay for abortions, including through health insurance coverage.
  • HB 1247 – tightens restrictions on minors who seek judicial approval to have abortions without their parents being notified.
  • HB 1397 – seeks to make abortions illegal after fetus has reached “viability,” and forces doctors own and operate any new abortion clinics after October 1, 2011.
  • HB 501 – seeks to send all state money collected through sales of “choose life” license tags to the organization, Choose Life.

Debates about abortion have been common in the state legislature, but with conservatives having a super majority, there has been a large uptick in the volume of bills dealing with abortion.

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“What these bills represent I think is the biggest expansion of government into the personal lives of the people of Florida, especially the women of Florida in the history of the state of Florida,” said Simon.

The Senate is looking to take up two abortion bills on the floor on Wednesday and others appear to have a chance at passing before the legislative session ends on May 6.

Any bill that is passed by both chambers will be quickly signed by Governor Rick Scott.

Simon says any of the bills that are signed into law, will be challenged in court by the ACLU.

To track the House and Senate Bills, Click Here:

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