Lawmaker Defends Dismemberment Abortions: “I Uphold the Constitution Not the Bible”

State   |   Micaiah Bilger   |   Jun 22, 2016   |   7:11PM   |   Harrisburg, PA

A Philadelphia lawmaker stood up in the Pennsylvania House of Representatives on Tuesday to defend state laws allowing unborn babies to be killed in brutal dismemberment abortions and painful later-term abortions.

State Rep. Brian Sims, a pro-abortion Democrat from Philadelphia, was one of 65 legislators who voted against House Bill 1948 on Tuesday. The bill would ban brutal dismemberment abortions that tear unborn babies limb from limb and prohibit abortions after 20 weeks when unborn babies can feel pain. The bill passed the state House on Tuesday with support from 132 legislators, LifeNews reported.

During a lengthy, heated debate on the House floor, Sims called the bill unconstitutional and urged legislators to oppose it, Raw Story reports.

“I implored you then as I do now — as an attorney, as a civil rights advocate, and as a legislator that has sworn to uphold the Constitution and not the Bible or any other religious document — to see this legislation for what it actually is,” Sims said. “An end around the U.S. Supreme Court and the Constitution that is beneath this body.”

He continued: “Legislators like each of us in this room have absolutely no business making personal medical decisions for other people. Virtually every person in this room has had to make a major medical decision for themselves or for a loved one. Now imagine having to come here. Each of you, imagine having to stand at this podium and implore this room to allow you to make a personal medical decision for yourself or for a loved one.”

Sims, however, ignored the medical evidence that the “personal medical decision” of abortion involves two people’s lives, not just one, and an abortion purposefully destroys one of those lives without their knowledge or consent.

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Polls show that Sims’ extreme pro-abortion position is out of touch with most Americans. A 2016 poll from Marist University found 84 percent of Americans want significant restrictions on abortion. A national poll by The Polling Company also found that, after being informed that there is scientific evidence that unborn children are capable of feeling pain at least by 20 weeks, 64% would support a law banning abortion after 20 weeks, unless the mother’s life was in danger. Only 30% said they would oppose such a law.

Dismemberment abortion, performed on a fully-formed, living unborn baby, is a barbaric and dangerous procedure in which the unborn child is literally ripped apart in the womb and pulled out in pieces. The Pennsylvania bill embodies model legislation from the National Right to Life Committee that would ban “dismemberment abortion,” using forceps, clamps, scissors or similar instruments on a living unborn baby to remove him or her from the womb in pieces. Such instruments are used in dilation and evacuation procedures.

In Pennsylvania, 1,550 unborn babies were aborted in 2014 using the brutal D&E dismemberment abortion method, according to state statistics.

“Most countries are civilized enough to realize pre-born babies should not be torn apart. There are only seven countries in the world, including human rights-violating countries such as North Korea and China, that allow this terrible act. Pennsylvanians deserve better,” stated Michael Ciccocioppo, executive director of the Pennsylvania Pro-Life Federation, the Pennsylvania affiliate of National Right to Life. “This is an important first step in removing us from that stigma.  Now we call on the Pennsylvania Senate to act quickly to concur and on Governor Wolf to sign the bill to protect his most vulnerable constituents.”

Gov. Tom Wolf, a pro-abortion Democrat who has close ties to Planned Parenthood, said he will veto the legislation.

Sims’ claim that the bill is unconstitutional also is debatable. While Roe v. Wade stands, states cannot ban abortions completely, but National Right to Life points to the U.S. Supreme Court’s ruling in the partial-birth abortion case as grounds for banning dismemberment abortions.

In his dissent to the U.S. Supreme Court’s 2000 Stenberg v. Carhart decision, Justice Anthony Kennedy observed that in D&E dismemberment abortions: “The fetus, in many cases, dies just as a human adult or child would: It bleeds to death as it is torn limb from limb. The fetus can be alive at the beginning of the dismemberment process and can survive for a time while its limbs are being torn off.” Justice Kennedy added in the Court’s 2007 opinion, Gonzales v. Carhart, which upheld the ban on partial-birth abortion, that D&E abortions are “laden with the power to devalue human life…”

“When abortion textbooks describe in cold, explicit detail exactly how to kill a human being by ripping off arms and legs piece by piece, civilized members of society have no choice but to stand up and demand a change,” Mary Spaulding Balch of NRLC said. “When you think it can’t be uglier, the abortion industry continues to shock with violent methods of abortion.”

Supporters of the ban also point to the 2007 U.S. Supreme Court Gonzales ruling, which said: “Casey [the 1992 Supreme Court decision on abortion] does not allow a doctor to choose the abortion method he or she might prefer …[and physicians] are not entitled to ignore regulations that direct them to use reasonable alternative procedures.”