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The American Bar Association passed a resolution Tuesday recognizing a woman's right to abortion, declaring that such a right is grounded in the constitutional guarantee of privacy.

The decision was met with immediate criticism from the National Right to Life Committee, an anti-abortion group that said it would be "clearly inappropriate" for the ABA, in light of its endorsement of abortion rights, to continue to be allowed to review and veto potential federal judges."The ABA has voted to become just another lobby in support of abortion on demand," said NRLC legislative director Douglas Johnson.

Pro-abortion groups, including Planned Parenthood of America, hailed the passage of the resolution.

Following nearly 2 1/2 hours of debate and attempts to defer the matter indefinitely, the resolution before the ABA's House of Delegates was approved on a vote of 238 to 106.

Less than two hours after the vote, ABA Treasurer Joseph N. Nolan announced from the podium that he would resign his post to protest the abortion vote.