Pro-lifers won new victories for the unborn this year when state legislators approved nearly 50 pro-life bills.
The Hill reports that 16 states passed pro-life legislation to restrict abortions and protect unborn babies in 2015, according to data released by the abortion advocacy group Center for Reproductive Rights.
Two states passed significant new laws that protect unborn babies from violent abortions after 20 weeks, after the point at which they are capable of feeling pain. West Virginia fought a long and hard battle to pass the 20-week abortion ban, even overriding Gov. Ear Ray Tomblin’s veto in a historic move. Wisconsin also passed a similar pro-life law in July.
In 2015, legislators in Michigan, Ohio and South Carolina also introduced bills to protect unborn babies from abortions after 20 weeks, according to the abortion group’s report. The Pain-Capable Unborn Child Protection Act is based on a National Right to Life model bill that also became law in Alabama, Arkansas, Kansas, Louisiana, Nebraska, North Dakota, Oklahoma and Texas.
Meanwhile, five states voted to lengthen waiting periods for abortion: Arkansas, North Carolina, Oklahoma, South Dakota and Tennessee, the report states. These mandatory waiting periods allow women more time to find abortion alternatives and choose life for their child. They also help to give women time to think about the decision, especially if they have faced pressure from a partner or at an abortion clinic.
North Carolina, South Dakota and Oklahoma passed 72-hour waiting periods earlier this year, joining Missouri and Utah in requiring the three-day period, LifeNews previously reported. Overall, 26 states require a waiting period, usually 24 hours.
Significantly, a pro-life rule passed in the liberal state of Rhode Island. The new rule requires that health insurers offer at least one plan on the Obamacare health exchange that excludes coverage for abortion. The new rule came after pro-life legal group Alliance Defending Freedom filed a lawsuit against the state when it was discovered that enrollees in the state health insurance plans had no choice but to select a plan that funded abortions.
Many states also tried to pass bills to de-fund the abortion giant Planned Parenthood in the wake of undercover videos showing some of its top officials selling aborted babies’ body parts. They include Utah, Arkansas, Alabama, Kentucky, Louisiana, Texas, North Carolina, New Hampshire, Ohio and Wisconsin. However, Planned Parenthood is challenging the legislation in court.
Despite abortion advocates’ claims, a majority of Americans support significant restrictions on abortion, according to a January Marist University poll. The survey finds support for abortion restrictions among both “pro-life” and “pro-choice” supporters.
According to the national survey, 84 percent of Americans want significant restrictions on abortion, and would limit abortions to, at most, the first three months of pregnancy. This includes almost 7 in 10 (69 percent) who identify themselves as “pro-choice” who support such abortion limits and oppose late-term abortions.
The same percentage (84 percent) also says that laws can protect both the well-being of a woman and the life of the unborn. In addition, by more than 20 points (60 percent to 38 percent), Americans say abortion is morally wrong.
Other national polls also show strong support nationwide for the Pain Capable Unborn Child Protection Act and stopping late-term abortions.
A poll conducted for the liberal Huffington Post found that Americans support the ban on late-term abortions starting at 20-weeks of pregnancy by almost a 2-1 margin.
A national poll by The Polling Company found that, after being informed that there is scientific evidence that unborn children are capable of feeling pain at least by 20 weeks, 64 percent would support a law banning abortion after 20 weeks, unless the mother’s life was in danger. Only 30 percent said they would oppose such a law.
A November 2014 poll from Quinnipiac found that 60 percent of Americans support legislation limiting abortions after 20 weeks, including 56 percent of Independents and 46 percent of Democrats.