abortionRALEIGH—A bill that would extend the abortion waiting period to 72 hours in North Carolina has moved closer to passage with a favorable vote on the Senate floor.

After a lengthy debate, the full Senate gave tentative approval to the bill on Thursday. A final Senate vote could come next week.

The bill is more wide ranging than what was previously approved in the House, and now includes  some provisions dealing with domestic violence and statutory rape. For opponents of the proposal now known as theWomen and Children’s Protection Act of 2015, they say the intentions of this bill is clear: to limit abortions and take the decision making power away from women.

“It is patronistic and it is insulting to say that I cannot make up my mind and that I need 72 hours to consider my options,” said Sen. Erica Smith-Ingram.

Under the waiting-period provision, women would have to talk to a doctor or other qualified professional 72 hours before having an abortion, unless there’s a medical emergency. Several other states have 72-hour waiting periods.

A new item on the senate side- says that only OBGYNs can perform abortions, whereas currently other doctors may do the procedure as well.

“I mean the purpose of this is basically limit women’s rights to basically choose what they would like to do with their bodies, and to make it more difficult, more challenging. I guess if this body could overturn Roe v. Wade they would,” said Sen. Floyd McKissick, a Durham County Democrat.

A version of the bill has already passed the state House, but that chamber would need to approve provisions added by Senate Republicans that include several criminal justice measures.

– Loretta Boniti