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In dramatic contrast to House-passed Abortion on Demand Until Birth Act, bill to protect pain-capable unborn children from late-term abortions introduced

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A recent Harvard poll revealed that 72 percent of Americans, including 75 percent of women, oppose abortion after 15 weeks of pregnancy. This stands in stark contrast to the House-passed Abortion on Demand Until Birth Act, which would have granted women the right to terminate pregnancies at any stage. Instead, a bill has been introduced to protect pain-capable unborn children from late-term abortions.

In stark contrast to the Abortion on Demand Until Birth Act passed by the Democrat House in July, more than 80 Members of Congress led by House Pro-Life Caucus leaders Reps. In a move that has been hailed as a significant step forward in the ongoing debate surrounding abortion, Chris Smith (R-NJ), Michelle Fischbach (R-MN), Andy Harris (R-MD) and Kat Cammack (R-FL) have today introduced legislation with the aim of ending the “excruciating suffering and physical pain of unborn babies” that is currently associated with abortion.

The data published on Monday indicates that approximately 55,800 unborn children are killed by abortion at 15 weeks gestation or later each year.

The Protecting Pain-Capable Unborn Children from Late-Term Abortions Act, which would prevent most abortions after 15 weeks gestation, updates an earlier version of legislation authored by Smith to reflect compelling evidence that unborn babies feel excruciating pain sooner than previously known. Similarly, Senator Lindsey Graham (R-SC) is introducing an identical bill in the Senate.

Smith stated that, as a result of significant advances in the field of science, it is now understood that at least 15 weeks into the pregnancy, unborn babies who are killed by abortion experience excruciating suffering and physical pain. The proposed legislation responds to the scientific advances already recognised in fetal medicine by increasing the protection of human rights afforded to these children.

A recent Harvard poll revealed that 72 percent of Americans, including 75 percent of women, oppose abortion after 15 weeks of pregnancy. A poll conducted by Marist in January 2022 similarly revealed that 71% of Americans oppose abortion after the first three months of pregnancy.

Smith stated that the aforementioned bill, which has been passed by the Democrat House on two occasions, would legally authorise and enable the violent death of unborn babies by a number of methods, including dismemberment, decapitation, forced expulsion from the womb, the use of deadly poisons, and other means, at any time and for any reason until birth.

Furthermore, the legislation would render null and void every modest pro-life restriction ever enacted by the states. These include, for example, women’s right to know laws in 35 states, parental involvement statutes in 37 states, the pain-capable unborn child protection laws in 19 states, waiting periods in 26 states, and many other similar restrictions.

Smith stated that the dismemberment abortion, the most common method employed during the second trimester, involves the severing of the child’s limbs, including the arms and legs. “Until the point of death or unconsciousness, the infant experiences each incision.”

Smith posited that the general population is averse to pain, attempts to avoid it, and even experiences fear in response to it. Furthermore, individuals will go to great lengths to mitigate the severity and duration of pain. Nevertheless, on a daily basis, a significant proportion of the global population is subjected to painful and potentially lethal medical procedures. This egregious violation of human rights must be brought to an immediate halt.

Smith asserts that the Protecting Pain-Capable Unborn Children from Late-Term Abortions Act acknowledges the medical evidence indicating that unborn children experience pain.

As early as 2004, fetal pain expert Dr. Kanwaljeet Anand proposed that unborn babies in the second trimester of pregnancy may experience pain to a greater extent than newborn babies and older children. Since that time, research has indicated that there is substantial evidence that babies are mature enough by 15 weeks to feel pain.

In a recent development, Dr. Stuart Derbyshire, a renowned authority on fetal pain since 1994, has also endorsed this view, suggesting that unborn babies may experience pain even earlier than previously thought.

Smith observed that, in their efforts to provide surgical care to the unborn child, fetal surgeons frequently administer anaesthesia to protect the infant from pain. The unborn child is a patient, and there are numerous anomalies and illnesses that can be treated with a certain degree of success while the child is still in the uterus. When such interventions are performed, anaesthesia is administered.

Smith also drew attention to a TIME Magazine cover story entitled “Saving Preemies”, which examined the preemie revolution and the ways in which medicine and dedicated caregivers are helping the tiniest babies to survive and thrive.

TIME reports that, thanks to advances that had not been made even a few years ago, the odds of surviving and thriving are improving all the time.

In contrast, abortionists are primarily concerned with ensuring that children neither survive nor thrive. “It is the duty of society to ensure that unborn children, including those with disabilities, are not subjected to excruciating deaths by dismemberment.”


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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