Madison — Republicans in the state Senate gave preliminary approval to a bill Tuesday requiring women seeking abortions to get ultrasounds and doctors providing them to have hospital admitting privileges, clearing the way for the measure to become law by the end of the month.
Democrats blocked a final vote on the bill Tuesday, but Senate President Mike Ellis (R-Neenah) said senators would return to the floor at 8 a.m. Wednesday to give final passage to the measure.
The plan has the support of Republicans who control the Assembly, as well as GOP Gov. Scott Walker. The Assembly could take it up as early as Thursday.
Opponents contend the provision on admitting privileges would shut down one of the state's four abortion clinics. Closing Planned Parenthood of Wisconsin's Appleton clinic would mean Milwaukee and Madison would be the only cities in the state where abortions were available.
Walker said Tuesday he would sign the measure if it gets to him.
"I don't have any problem with ultrasounds. I think most people think ultrasounds are just fine," Walker told reporters after a voucher school event at Hotel Metro in Milwaukee.