Pro-Life Groups Urge Calls to Congress for 20-Week Abortion Ban

National   |   Steven Ertelt   |   May 21, 2013   |   10:30AM   |   Washington, DC

Two leading pro-life groups are urging pro-life advocates to contact members of Congress to support a bill that would ban abortions after 20 weeks of pregnancy nationwide because unborn children can feel pain.

The National Right to Life Committee says the bill has its “strong backing.”

“Pro-life members of Congress, led by Congressman Trent Franks (R-Az.) and Senator Mike Lee (R-Utah), with strong backing from the National Right to Life Committee (NRLC), have proposed legislation to protect unborn children capable of feeling pain — defined in the legislation as those who have reached 20 weeks fetal age — from abortion,” the group said in a legislative alert to its members.

“The legislation is the Pain-Capable Unborn Child Protection Act  (H.R. 1797, S. 886). The bill would prohibit abortion after 20 weeks fetal age, unless the mother’s life is endangered — based on compelling scientific evidence that by 20 weeks (if not earlier), the unborn child is capable of experiencing excruciating pain while being aborted,” NRLC said.

The group notes how, during a 2012 hearing on this legislation, Dr. Anthony Levatino, a former abortionist, explained to a House panel exactly how second-trimester dismemberment (“D&E”) abortions are performed.

NRLC warns that abortion advocates are already getting their allies to call and email Congress.

“Pro-abortion groups and their allies in Congress have made it clear that they intend to try to delay, obstruct, and defeat this bill,” it said and it urged pro-life people to “send messages to your representative in the U.S. House and to your two U.S. senators, urging them to cosponsor H.R. 1797 or S. 886, if they have not already done so, and to urge its speedy passage.”

Fr. Frank Pavone, National Director of Priests for Life, is also urging support for the bill.

“This week, Congressman Trent Franks (AZ-08) will hold a press conference on the Pain Capable Unborn Child Protection Act, announcing that its provisions, to protect children in the womb from 20 weeks of development forward, will apply nationwide. Moreover, a hearing regarding the bill will be held on Thursday,” he said.



“Priests for Life believes this is the most significant legislative effort to date in bringing protection to unborn children. We have therefore already alerted every parish in America to inform and mobilize its congregation in support of this bill. We are also calling upon pro-life organizations large and small to give it their full support,” he added.

Pavone concluded: “The team of Priests for Life has been instrumental in bringing attention to the case of Kermit Gosnell and in exposing other abortionists like him, and has been developing educational strategies related to late term abortion, such as our campaign. We will redouble these efforts as a way of supporting passage of the Pain Capable Unborn Child Protection Act.”