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Senate to Vote on Bill Protecting Infants Who Survive Attempted Abortions Next Week

Do you support stronger protections for infants born alive after attempted abortions?

by Countable | 2.19.19

Before the Senate wrapped up its floor work last week, Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-KY) announced the chamber’s first order of business when it returns from Presidents Day recess will be a vote on a bill to protect infants born alive after attempted abortions.

The Born-Alive Abortion Survivors Protection Act (S. 311), offered by Sen. Ben Sasse (R-NE), would:

  • Require healthcare providers to extend “reasonably diligent and conscientious care” to an infant born alive following an attempted abortion.
  • Healthcare providers would be required to take appropriate steps to save the infant’s life given its age and health, and immediately transport and admit the infant to a hospital.
  • If a healthcare provider fails to comply with those requirements they would face fines and up to five years imprisonment, or potentially murder charges if their actions lead to the born alive infant’s death.
  • The mother of the child that is born alive couldn’t face prosecution under this legislation. She could, however, file a civil lawsuit against the healthcare provider for compensatory and punitive damages.

Sasse’s bill would go beyond what Congress did in legislation enacted more than a decade and a half ago:

  • The Born-Alive Infants Protection Act, signed into law by President George W. Bush in 2002 after unanimously passing Congress, clarifies that for the purpose of federal law the terms “person”, “human being”, “child”, and “individual” include every infant born alive — whether the birth is the result of labor, c-section, or induced abortion.
  • However, it doesn’t contain its own criminal penalties or enforcement mechanisms to hold abortion providers accountable for failing to provide medical attention and care to infants born alive.

What are the prospects for Sasse’s bill?

Sasse attempted to bring the bill up for a vote by asking unanimous consent earlier this February, but Senate Democrats blocked that effort through Sen. Patty Murray’s (D-WA) objections, who said “we already have laws against infanticide”.

Monday’s vote is on a cloture motion on the motion to proceed, so it will require 60 votes to succeed. While the Born-Alive Abortion Survivors Protection Act currently has 49 Republican cosponsors it’s unclear whether enough Senate Democrats will support the motion for it to be agreed to.

If it is, the Senate would then debate the bill for up to 30 hours before taking another procedural vote on the motion to proceed, which would then be followed by debate and a likely vote on a cloture motion for the underlying bill before a passage vote could be held.

If it isn't, the Senate will move on to considering a circuit court nomination and will table the abortion debate for later date.

— Eric Revell

(Photo Credit: iStock.com / mvaligursky)

Countable

Written by Countable

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(346)
  • Jim
    Voted Oppose
    02/19/2019
    ···

    This is just done in order to fire up all these religious hypocrites and base. Do something about the brown children at the border. Prove your not a racist and do something for living children.

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  • 12yanogden
    Voted Support
    02/19/2019
    ···

    Do I have to say to stop killing newborns?! Stop killing newborns!

    Like (60)
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  • Spruce
    02/19/2019
    ···

    This matters to me because the baby is human. It would be murder to kill the baby. I can't believe this is even up for discussion. However, as long as it is, I support saving the life. At the same time, I feel that the mother and the baby should be given all the help they need. We are supposed to be the most powerful country on earth. We can surely find support for women and their babies.

    Like (44)
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  • M
    Voted Oppose
    02/19/2019
    ···

    Unnecessary legislation designed to further divide our country

    Like (55)
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  • TrulyTexan
    02/20/2019
    ···

    If only republicans cared at all about life after birth.

    Like (42)
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  • Joe
    Voted Support
    02/19/2019
    ···

    If you let Democrats decide that some class of people are not human, you might be next.

    Like (38)
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  • Elizabeth
    Voted Oppose
    02/20/2019
    ···

    Late term abortions are not performed unless the child will not survive outside the womb and the mother’s life is in danger. These families are going through unimaginable pain. The language used by the Republican Party is intentionally misleading and puts women at risk. If they actually cared about babies they would put forth legislation that ensures healthcare for all children regardless of race, religion, or socioeconomic status. But they don’t actually care about babies they care about controlling women.

    Like (44)
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  • Stewart
    Voted Oppose
    02/19/2019
    ···

    There is already a law in place. This is clearly just a symbolic act used to attack women who have abortions, and doctors who conduct them.

    Like (39)
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  • K.d.
    Voted Oppose
    02/19/2019
    ···

    Everyone is upset by killing newborn babies, which is not happening. Who is upset about the thousands of living children in ICE custody in one of the nastiest atrocities in US history? This is a cynical political ploy to rile up conservatives who don’t know any facts, but get all emotional when manipulated.

    Like (36)
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  • Laurie
    Voted Oppose
    02/20/2019
    ···

    If this was a provable offense I’d agree. However, the only information I find is from Conservative/Evangelical based sites. This is just another reason to divide our country. I can’t imagine any Doctor who would purposely kill an infant. NEVER. This is about moving this country to the religious right.

    Like (31)
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  • Christian
    Voted Support
    02/19/2019
    ···

    This is needed because there are infants who survive abortions. When they do, the doctors and nurses often either leave the baby to die in a utility closet or drown them in formaldehyde. Don’t believe that? Search out congressional testimony from Gianna Jesson and Melissa Ohden. Hear it from people who went through it.

    Like (21)
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  • Brett
    Voted Support
    02/19/2019
    ···

    Support Life , it’s the most basic right.

    Like (16)
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  • SneakyPete
    Voted Support
    02/19/2019
    ···

    PROTECTION AGAINST THE DEMOCRATIC “FOURTH TRIMESTER” ABORTION EFFORT I’m in full agreement withMajority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-KY) announced that the chamber’s first order of business, when it returns from Presidents Day recess, will be a vote on a bill to protect infants born alive after attempted abortions. The “FORTH TRIMESTER” is basically the idea that the first 3 months of life are very much an extension of life in the womb for baby. Baby has spent 40 weeks (or there abouts!) having her every need attended to. He / She never knew hunger, was always rocked, and could always hear mama’s heartbeat. SneakyPete.......... 👍🏻👶🏼👧🏻👶🏽👍🏻. 2*19*19..........

    Like (16)
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  • Sarah
    Voted Oppose
    02/20/2019
    ···

    This is yet another chance for Republicans to try and hinder a women’s right to choose.

    Like (15)
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  • Anna
    Voted Oppose
    02/20/2019
    ···

    Late term abortions are done for medical reasons when a baby is not going to survive. These babies are going to die, and no amount of medical intervention can save them. Doctors are not gods. Death still happens despite our best efforts, because there are certain things that are still only up to God. This bill sets doctors, nurses, and women up to be prosecuted for things beyond their control. These families are already suffering, don’t make their trauma even worse by adding fear of legal prosecution to their grief.

    Like (15)
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  • John
    Voted Oppose
    02/19/2019
    ···

    This is another Repugnacant and Anti-Choice attempt to rile up their base. It is meant to scare and horrify people when it’s real goal is to prime the pump for more restrictions on women’s control of their own bodies.

    Like (15)
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  • Edward s
    Voted Support
    02/20/2019
    ···

    I support the defense of the defenseless. There has NEVER been even one instance , of a preborn human that had to be aborted to save a mothers life. If you do not wish to parent the child you have carried into the third trimester, put it up for adoption , do not murder it.

    Like (14)
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  • AbolishWaste
    Voted Oppose
    02/19/2019
    ···

    If my uterus could fire bullets would Republicans stop regulating it? If my uterus were a corporation would Republicans stop regulating it? The war on drugs increased drug use and drug addition. The war on abortions increases abortion rates. In Western European countries where abortions are easy to access, the abortion rates are three times lower than countries that declare war on abortions. Please review this medical journal article published in the Lancet. Induced abortion: incidence and trends worldwide from 1995 to 2008 Gilda Sedgh, Susheela Singh, Iqbal H Shah, Elisabeth Åhman, Stanley K Henshaw, Akinrinola Bankole

    Like (14)
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  • Marizzapan
    Voted Oppose
    02/20/2019
    ···

    I find it so very hypocritical and deceitful for those who wail and gnash their teeth over late term abortions (knowing they don't occur unless something is drastically wrong) on the one hand and on the other hand screech that their 2A rights trump human lives. The same people here who castigate and demonize late term abortions are the same people who shrug their shoulders at the idea of calling a National Emergency over the thousands of children (who are already born and alive) that are slaughtered by guns damn near daily. You people are not pro-life. You're pro-hypocrite.

    Like (14)
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  • Cynthia
    Voted Support
    02/20/2019
    ···

    Make SURE those unborn babies are cared for. Please stop this! It's a crime!

    Like (14)
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