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Bill to ban abortions based on gender fails to win support

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BATON ROUGE - Louisiana appears unlikely to add a new legal restriction banning "sex-selection" abortions performed based on gender.

The House-backed proposal stalled Tuesday in a Senate judiciary committee, on a 2-2 vote that keeps the bill stuck in committee. Bill sponsor Rep. Lenar Whitney, a Houma Republican, said she's not sure if she'll try to get another hearing.

The proposal would allow lawsuits and injunction requests to be filed against doctors and abortion clinic employees for suspected violations of the ban. Critics say that's aimed at stoking fear among people who work at the clinics and lessening abortion access.

Whitney acknowledged there was no evidence that sex-selection abortions have happened in Louisiana, but she said putting the provision on the books would help ensure they don't.

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