In what is being termed a landmark pro-life gain, on June 18 the House of Representatives passed the Pain-Capable Unborn Child Protection Act (H.R. 1797), a measure that would ban abortions across the nation after a woman's 20th week of pregnancy. The bill passed by a 228-196 margin, with six Democrats voting for the bill and six Republicans voting against it. The bill, which has already been passed in at least nine states, is modeled on legislative language crafted by the National Right to Life Committee (NRLC), and is based on overwhelming scientific evidence that a pre-born baby can feel pain by at least the 20th week of pregnancy.
While pro-life leaders considered passage of the bill in the House a historic milestone in the battle to protect the unborn, legislative observers said there is little chance that it will make it through the Democrat-controlled U.S. Senate — if it is even allowed up for a vote. Baptist Press News reported that Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid (D-Nev.) indicated he may not allow the bill to make it to the floor of the Senate, and President Obama promised a veto if the bill somehow reaches his desk.
In a policy statement, the White House expressed its strong opposition to the bill, calling it “a direct challenge to Roe v. Wade” that “shows contempt for women's health and rights, the role doctors play in their patients' health care decisions, and the Constitution.”
National Right to Life president Carol Tobias noted that the intense opposition from Obama and pro-abortion lawmakers defies the will of most Americans. “This legislation reflects the views of the overwhelming majority of both men and women,” Tobias said, pointing out that a recent nationwide poll found that 64 percent of Americans support legislation to protect pre-born babies who can feel pain. “The Obama White House, and all but a handful of House Democrats, fought for essentially unlimited abortion in the sixth month or later, despite growing public awareness of the violence perpetrated by late-term abortionists such as Kermit Gosnell and the pain they inflict on unborn babies,” she said. Tobias added that ....
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