Pro-abortion activists demanded that abortionists be allowed to deny basic medical care to babies who survive abortions during a Missouri Senate committee hearing Wednesday.
The state Seniors, Families, Veterans and Military Affairs Committee hearing focused on the Born Alive Abortion Survivor Protection Act (Senate Bill 753), a bill that requires abortionists to provide the same basic medical care to a baby who survives an abortion that a doctor would to any other baby born at the same gestational age. It also requires that the baby be transferred to a hospital for further treatment.
State Sen. Eric Burlison, R-Christian County, the lead sponsor of the bill, said his legislation will protect newborn babies from infanticide, The Fulton Sun reports.
“If a child survives an abortion, he or she should be treated with the same degree of medical concern and attention as any other child born prematurely for at the same stage of development,” Burlison told the committee.
Though seemingly uncontroversial, the anti-infanticide legislation received strong pushback from doctors and abortion activists with the American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists, Planned Parenthood and NARAL Pro-Choice Missouri.
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One woman, identified in the report only as “the vice chairwoman of the Missouri section of the American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists” (possibly Planned Parenthood abortionist Colleen McNicholas) slammed the bill as “inflammatory.”
“This legislation represents unwarranted interference in the patient-physician relationship. It’s based on inflammatory language and grossly inaccurate descriptions of OBGYNs and the patients that they care for,” she said. “Although this bill was written with abortion providers specifically in mind, its impact will be felt more broadly on obstetricians, perinatologist and neonatologist.”
Dr. Daniel Jackson, a maternal fetal medicine specialist, also criticized the bill, saying it would require abortionists to treat babies with disabilities rather than let them die, according to the report.
“There are some babies with birth defects that we diagnosed in utero … that 100 percent, with no exceptions, are not compatible with life outside of the womb,” Jackson said. “When the baby delivers, it will die within hours and minutes.”
In these cases, Jackson provides palliative care to the baby, which allows the mother and child to spend as much time together as possible before the child dies.
“This bill, as I read it, gives me concern that if I have a patient who delivers a baby — who we know has a short time on this earth — that rather than let them have those meaningful moments, I’m going to have to pull that baby away from her, give chest compressions, break that baby’s ribs and then hand it back to her, after it has passed away, and say, ‘Say goodbye,’” Jackson said.
However, Jackson appears to be misinterpreting the bill. It does not require doctors or abortionists to provide futile medical treatment to a dying baby who survives an abortion. Instead, it simply ensures that abortion survivors are not discriminated against by doctors and abortionists because they are alive when they should be dead. It makes sure that babies who survive abortions and are not dying receive life-saving medical care and that those who are dying receive pain relief and other palliative care.
Babies do survive abortions, though no one is sure exactly how many. In America, most states do not keep track of abortion survivors, but a few do.
Between 2016 and 2018, three states reported 40 babies were born alive after botched abortions. According to the state health data, 11 babies were born alive in Minnesota, 10 in Arizona and 19 in Florida. Texas reported six babies were born alive in botched abortions in 2019. In Michigan, state health reports from 2008 through 2013 indicate that 11 babies were born alive after abortions.
Statistics from the Centers for Disease Control, as well as the personal testimonies of nurses and abortion survivors themselves, also provide evidence that babies survive abortions. According to the CDC, at least 143 babies were born alive after botched abortions between 2003 and 2014 in the U.S., though there likely are more.
A report by Tessa Longbons, a research associate at Charlotte Lozier Institute, found that protections for babies who survive abortions are inconsistent across the United States, with fewer than half of states maintaining sufficient protections.