Appropriations Committee Chairman Jim Fannin, who handles the budget bill, began the debate by talking of the state's ongoing budget problems, saying balancing the spending plans is always difficult.

Opponents say the new restrictions are medically unnecessary and are designed to limit women's access to abortion.

Gov. Bobby Jindal's chief budget adviser says the administration won't reverse course on the privatization of state-owned hospitals that care for the poor and uninsured.

The tuition program will remain untouched for now, but state lawmakers could get special gun priviledges.

On average, Louisiana women make about 67 cents for every $1 men make, according to the U.S. Census Bureau.

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