Sen. Susan Collins, R-Maine, said she won’t support a bill by Democrats aimed at protecting abortion rights throughout the U.S., the Los Angeles Times is reporting.
The newspaper said the House is expected to approve the bill on Friday. Democrat leaders in the Senate are still deciding whether to bring it to a vote.
Collins maintained that the proposed legislation interferes with an existing law that guarantees health professionals who are against abortion are not required to participate in it.
“I support codifying Roe (vs. Wade),” she said. “Unfortunately, the bill … goes way beyond that. It would severely weaken the conscious exceptions that are in the current law.”
She called parts of the bill “extreme.”
Collins said the bill hurts the Religious Freedom Restoration Act, which protects individuals’ ability to exercise their religion.
USA Today said the bill is in response to the Texas “fetal heartbeat” law that took effect earlier in September.
Collins comments came in a brief interview on Tuesday. In a follow-up statement, she said, “This ‘carve out’ would be unprecedented, and I do not believe it is necessary to codify Roe.”
The Times said the key provision of the Democrats’ bill would place a ban on states prohibiting or interfering with abortion through viability.
The newspaper reported the bill faces almost certain defeat in the Senate, where it would need 60 votes to overcome a GOP filibuster.
Meanwhile, Collins said she is talking with other senators on a potential bill that “truly would codify Roe.”