Republican members of Congress have already introduced a bill to ban abortions after 20 weeks and leading pro-life groups are moving quickly to rally pro-life people around the ban in advance of a vote.
The bill is important to help underscore the fact that late-term abortions are legal in the United States and to educate the public about the fact that little babies born prematurely like Jessica, below right, could easily have become victims of abortions.
“This is Jessica, born at just 5 months of pregnancy. She’s just like you when you were that age – though you were probably still in your mom’s womb. She has perfect hands and feet, a tiny nose and chin and eyebrows. She can dream, cry… and feel pain,” says Marjorie Dannenfelser of the Susan B. Anthony List. “And right now, right here in America, she could be legally killed for any reason if she were still in the womb. And she would feel the excruciating pain.”
“This human rights abuse is unfit for any civilized country, yet America is in a group of just 7 nations where abortion-on-demand after 5 months is permitted,” Dannenfelser says. “The Pain-Capable Unborn Child Protection Act is the most important pro-life bill for saving unborn babies since Roe v. Wade, and polls show it’s backed by the majority of Americans and 60% of women. If passed, the bill would save up to 18,000 babies from abortion after 5 months… that’s 18,000 every year.”
Dannenfelser says the time is now for pro-life people to contact members of Congress and urge support for the Pain-Capable Unborn Child Protection Act to ban abortions after 20 weeks. Although pro-life people would prefer to protect unborn children from abortion starting at conception, this legislation represents the best Congress can to do protect unborn children give the Roe v. Wade decision and the Supreme Court’s current support for legalized abortion.
“A pro-life majority is in both the U.S. House and Senate, giving you an incredible opportunity to help advance this bill through Congress and effect real change in our nation for babies like Jessica,” Danenfelser says. “Your congressman needs to join HUNDREDS of others and co-sponsor the Pain-Capable Unborn Child Protection Act in a strong demonstration that the rights of unborn babies are a priority in the new Congress.”
With Republicans controlling both the House and Senate, there is a guarantee that the important pro-life legislation will finally receive a vote in both chambers of Congress. In 2013, the House approved the bill on a 228-196 vote with 6 Democrats voting for the bill and 6 Republicans voting against it. President Barack Obama has issued a veto threat against that bill and Senate Democrats refused to bring it up for a vote.
Congressman Trent Franks of Arizona, along with Representative Marsha Blackburn of Tennessee, are the lead sponsors of the bill.
In a statement, Franks told LifeNews: “More than 18,000 ‘very late term’ abortions are performed every year on perfectly healthy unborn babies in America. These are innocent and defenseless children who can not only feel pain, but who can survive outside of the womb in most cases, and who are torturously killed without even basic anesthesia. Many of them cry and scream as they die, but because it is amniotic fluid going over their vocal cords instead of air, we don’t hear them.”
“Late term Abortion in America has its defenders, but no true or principled defense. The Pain Capable Unborn Child Protection Act seeks to afford basic protection to mothers and their unborn babies entering the sixth month of gestation,” he said. “Throughout America’s history, the hearts of the American people have been moved with compassion when they discover a theretofore hidden class of victims, once they grasp both the humanity of the victims and the inhumanity of what is being done to them. America is on the cusp of another such realization.”
“We have a moral obligation to end dangerous late-term abortions in order to protect women and these precious babies from criminals like Kermit Gosnell and others who prey on the most vulnerable in our society,” Blackburn said. “The United States is one of the few remaining countries in the world that allows abortion after 20 weeks. That is why today we renew our efforts to protect the lives of babies and their mothers with the introduction of the Pain-Capable Unborn Child Protection Act. Rep. Franks and I have been a good team moving this legislation through the House as we continue to lead the fight to ensure the unborn are provided the same protections that all human life deserves.”