Senate Committee OKs Amdt to Allow Abortions at US Military Hospitals

National   |   Steven Ertelt   |   May 28, 2010   |   9:00AM   |   WASHINGTON, DC

Senate Committee OKs Amdt to Allow Abortions at US Military Hospitals

by Steven Ertelt Editor
May 28
, 2010

Washington, DC ( — A Senate committee yesterday approved an amendment to a bill that would turn U.S. military base hospitals into abortion centers. The amendment, sponsored by pro-abortion Sen. Rolland Burris of Illinois, would have the military break with current longstanding policy.

Abortion advocates have tried for years to force military bases hospitals to do abortions on female service members.

The Burris amendment is more expansive than a 2006 effort because it allows abortion on both domestic and overseas military bases.

The Senate Armed Services Committee voted 15-12 for the amendment with all Republicans and Democratic Sen. Ben Nelson voting against it and all other Democrats voting for it.

Senator Roger Wicker of Mississippi led the fight in the committee against the amendment and spoke out about it today on the Senate floor.

"The committee yesterday decided to reverse this long-standing policy and to say that indeed abortions, for whatever reason, will be performed in these facilities that are paid for by taxpayer expense," he said.

While military base hospitals should be "there for the care of our service members to keep them healthy and to repair their injuries," Wicker said "we’re
going to use those facilities for elective abortions."

Wicker promised pro-life lawmakers would do everything possible in the House and Senate to stop the amendment from going forward.

"But if this stands, our military installations, Fort Bragg, Columbus Air Force Base, Keesler Air Force Base in my home state of Mississippi, their medical facilities will be able to be used for abortions, performed late term, abortions performed for purposes of sex selection, abortions performed for any reason," Wicker complained.

"Abortion-at-will will be the requirement for our military installations and the medical facilities on those installations," he said.

Current law prohibits the performance of abortion by Department of Defense medical personnel or in Department of Defense medical facilities except when the life of the mother is at risk or when the pregnancy is the result of rape or incest. There is no distinction in this policy between military facilities within the United States and those overseas.

A separate provision prohibits the use of Department of Defense taxpayer funds for abortion except to save the life of the mother.

The issue of abortions done at military base medical centers has been around for two decades.

When ex-President Clinton allowed abortions in military facilities from 1993 to 1996, all military physicians (as well as many nurses and supporting personnel) refused to perform or assist in elective abortions. In response, the Clinton administration attempted to hire civilians to do abortions.

ACTION: Go to to see the members of the committee and express your opinion about their vote.

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