By Associated Press - Wednesday, February 17, 2016

SALT LAKE CITY (AP) - Gov. Gary Herbert says he has no problem with the general concept of a Utah lawmaker’s proposal to require doctors to administer anesthesia to a fetus before an abortion based on the premise that the fetus can feel pain.

Herbert, a Republican who opposes abortion, told reporters Wednesday that he doesn’t know at what point in the gestational process a fetus can feel pain. But the governor says if abortion is legal, it should be performed as humanely as possible.

Sen. Curt Bramble, R-Provo, says he’s still determining at what point in the gestational process his proposal would apply. A draft of his bill has not yet been released.

Montana lawmakers passed a similar law in 2015 requiring fetal anesthesia before surgeries, including abortion, after 20 or more gestational weeks. That state’s governor later vetoed the measure.

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