The Washington Examiner is reporting on the motion to pass the Act, which was authored by Sen. Ben Sasse (R-NE) who sought to pass it by unanimous consent, which means that if even one senator objects the bill can be stopped.
“You’re either for babies or you’re defending infanticide," Sasse said before the vote. "That's literally what this bill is about."
One of the reasons for attempting to fast-track the bill through Congress was the public outrage sparked last week after the passage of New York’s Reproductive Health Act and attempts to pass a similar bill in Virginia that would allow infants to be killed up to, and even after, the moment of birth. With the majority of Americans favoring the restriction of abortion to the first trimester, including those who self-identify as pro-choice, this was a way to make Democrats take a stand on whether or not they were in favor of these extreme abortion laws.
As the Examiner reports, Sasse's bill "would have built on the 2002 Born-Alive Infants Protection Act, which clarified that ‘every infant member of the species homo sapiens who is born alive at any stage of development’ is a ‘person’ for all federal law purposes. That law was intended to clarify that babies were supposed to receive protections if they survived an abortion, and Sasse’s bill further clarifies what level of care they are supposed to receive, including being immediately transferred to a hospital. If that protocol isn’t followed, then the doctor performing the abortion would face criminal prosecution.”
Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-KY) said during his opening remarks on the Senate floor yesterday that the proposed legislation was “the very definition of something that might receive unanimous consent.
"What could be more unanimous than this? ... It's harrowing this legislation is even necessary," McConnell said.
However, Senator Patty Murry disagreed and objected to the bill, saying, ““We have laws against infanticide in this country. This is a gross misinterpretation of the actual language of the bill that is being asked to be considered and therefore I object,” she said before leaving.
Even her fellow lawmakers from Washington state were shocked.
“It doesn’t matter how they have entered this world; providing medical care for babies who have just been born is a human rights issue,” said Rep. Dan Newhouse (R-WA).
“The recent remarks made by the governor of Virginia show the need to take a stand against infanticide. I am deeply disappointed that the U.S. Senate – and senator from Washington state – could not come to unanimous agreement to approve legislation to require medical care for newborn children. This is a debate that goes beyond partisan politics. This is about the value our society places on newborn children.”
Rep. Cathy McMorris Rodgers (R-WA) was equally appalled: “It’s heartbreaking that extreme party politics just superseded the principle of basic human dignity. With technology today, we can look into the womb and we can see the development of the baby day-by-day. It’s the most amazing thing in the world. I urge Democrats in the Senate who blocked the Born Alive Abortion Protection Act to take a step back, look at the science, and consider what this means. It should be unthinkable to end the life of a living baby.”
Pro-life organizations such as the Susan B. Anthony List expressed their outrage at this cold-hearted disregard for the dignity of humanity.
“Senate Democrats had the chance today to prove they are not the party of infanticide, and instead they doubled down on extremism,” Marjorie Dannenfelser, the president of SBA List, said in a statement. “The Democratic Party’s agenda of abortion on demand through birth and even beyond is radically out of step with the standards of decency the overwhelming majority of Americans expect from their leaders."
Senator Murray might have won the battle, but this war is far from over.
As Family Research Council president Tony Perkins writes, “Senator Murray won’t have the final say on whether infants born alive will be fully protected by federal law. One day soon, I’m confident U.S. senators will be forced to take a vote on the Born-Alive Abortion Survivors Protection Act and then voters will hold them accountable for their votes.”
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