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Pro-life House leaders hold press conference condemning Senate Dems for killing the Born-Alive Legislation

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This morning, Representative Ann Wagner (R-Mo.) and five of her pro-life House colleagues held a press conference to condemn Senate Democrats for failing to advance the Born-Alive Abortion Survivors Protection Act (S. 311), sponsored by Senator Ben Sasse (R-Neb.).

The final vote was 53-44, with all but three Democrats voting to block the bill from receiving the 60 votes necessary to move S.311 forward. This was achieved by invoking cloture. The bill would extend federal legal protection to infants who are born alive during an abortion.

In the House, the Democrats have erected a procedural obstacle which prevents a similar bill from being heard. In addition to her colleagues, Wagner encouraged House members to sign a “discharge petition” in order to compel the same legislation to be put to a vote on the floor of the House.

A discharge petition is a procedural tactic employed to circumvent the Speaker of the House when the latter is opposed to a measure. The discharge petition allows for the initiation of a floor vote on a bill by an absolute majority of the House (218 lawmakers), despite the opposition of pro-abortion leaders to the measure in question.

Representative Wagner was accompanied by the House Majority Whip, Steve Scalise (R-La.), Representative Jackie Walorski (R-Ind.), Representative Chris Smith (R-NJ), Representative Roger Marshall (R-KS), and Representative Michael Burgess (R-Tx.), as well as several pro-life organisations, who all made remarks. The members expressed a unified sentiment of dismay over the 44 senators who voted to permit the willful withholding of life-saving care from a born-alive infant, thereby effectively condoning infanticide.

The recent action on the Born-Alive Abortion Survivors Protection Act has been taken in the wake of considerable controversy in New York and Virginia. In January, the New York legislature passed and Governor Andrew Cuomo (D) signed the so-called “Reproductive Health Act.” In addition to other provisions, the legislation revoked the legal protections afforded to infants born alive during an attempted abortion. Previously, New York law stipulated that a second physician be present to care for a child 20 weeks or older born alive during an abortion.

In the US state of Virginia, Governor Ralph Northam (D) has become involved in the debate surrounding the introduction of a New York-style measure in the Commonwealth. In a radio interview during the Virginia legislature’s debate over the “repeal bill,” Northam stated that an infant born alive during an attempted abortion would not necessarily be entitled to immediate treatment other than being made “comfortable.” His remarks provoked a wave of condemnation.

Jennifer Popik, J.D., the director of federal legislation for National Right to Life, informed the press corps that

You have to ask yourself, can we really trust the abortionist who seconds before was trying to end this baby’s life to now provide treatment? We need clear standards of medical care for babies who are born alive. That is why we need this improved version of the Born Alive Act.

We are appalled that pro-abortion Democratic Senators are filibustering the Born-Alive Abortion Survivors Protection Act. They must explain to their constituents why their allegiance to the abortion industry’s agenda should allow a practice that amounts to infanticide.

We call on all members of the House of Representatives to sign the discharge petition and bring this bill to the floor for a vote. Let the American public see how much they really care about the most vulnerable among us.

Further information on the history of the Born-Alive Infants Protection Act of 2002 (1 U.S.C. §8) and related issues can be found on the NRLC website at: www.nrlc.org/federal/bornaliveinfants.


Daniel Miller is responsible for nearly all of National Right to Life News' political writing.

With the election of Donald Trump to the U.S. presidency, Daniel Miller developed a deep obsession with U.S. politics that has never let go of the political scientist. Whether it's the election of Joe Biden, the midterm elections in Congress, the abortion rights debate in the Supreme Court or the mudslinging in the primaries - Daniel Miller is happy to stay up late for you.

Daniel was born and raised in New York. After living in China, working for a news agency and another stint at a major news network, he now lives in Arizona with his two daughters.

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