NC House leader expects abortion bill to pass

A leader of the North Carolina House said Wednesday he expects his chamber to pass abortion legislation approved by the Senate Wednesday morning.

Paul “Skip” Stam, a Republican from Wake County and the House Speaker Pro Tempore, told WNCN, “Most of it has already passed the House – all but the last section passed the House six weeks ago, so I'd analyze it and say yes. “

He said he followed much of Wednesday mornings proceedings and said of the House, “We'll have a lively debate.”

Stam said the bulk of the measure already had been approved by the House, with the Senate adding a section that added more oversight of abortion clinics from the Department of Health and Human Services.

The Senate voted 29-12 for the bill, which has regulators to change abortion clinic rules to make them similar to rules for ambulatory surgery centers. Supporters say it will make abortion clinics safer, while opponents say it makes for onerous, and difficult, regulations.

Stam said he expected the House to approve the bill and send it on to Gov. Pat McCrory. McCrory issued a statement Wednesday criticizing the Senate process, but he did not say if he will support the bill.

Stam said he has not spoken with McCrory on the matter but expects the governor to support it.

“I'm not speaking for him. If I were governor, I would sign it,” Stam said. “I think it's a really well put-together bill, very reasonable. So he's a pro-life governor. I think he'll be in favor of it.”

In a ferocious debate on the Senate floor Wednesday, many Democrats questioned a process that had the bill coming up Tuesday and then for a final vote Wednesday. But Stam had sharp words about criticism of the process.

He said the bill was in the Republican platform, and said, “I was shocked that they were shocked that the bill would come up.”

Stam said the House will convene Monday but he said he didn't expect the House to vote on the bill the first day back from the July Fourth holiday.

How to contact key North Carolina politicians

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