Senate Planning Vote on Unconstitutional 20-Week Abortion Ban

Following their August recess, Senate members intend to vote on a measure that would effectively ban most abortions after 20 weeks of pregnancy. Abortions at this late stage are already extremely rare, with many the result of health issues related to either the mother or the fetus; fetal anomalies are often not detectable until this stage of pregnancy. While the bill does include language exempting women seeking an abortion in cases of rape, incest, and life-threatening emergency, this still puts unnecessary and potential harmful restrictions on women often in dire situations. The bill is unlikely to reach the 60 votes it needs to pass but it continues the trend of dangerous legislation targeting women’s access to reproductive health services at both the state and federal level.

It’s only been a few months since the companion bill passed in the U.S. House of Representatives. The so-called, “Pain Capable Unborn Child Protection Act”, is based off the claim that a fetus can feel pain beyond that point of development, which is currently a highly contentious idea among scientists and all major medical organizations. Although the bill passed several RMC champions who opposed the bill, including Bob Dold (IL-11), Charlie Dent (PA-15), Rodney Frelinghuysen (NJ-11), and Richard Hanna (NY-22).

In many instances, legislation similar to this bill has been found unconstitutional at the state level, a fact seemingly ignored by the extreme members fueling this debate. This effort is a waste of our leaders’ time and taxpayers’ dollars. As the latest attempt by anti-choice extremists to eliminate all access abortion, this proves, yet again, that these members do not rely on the facts. Restrictions and gating does not decrease abortion rates or the necessity for abortion. If you want to reduce unplanned pregnancies, teen pregnancies, and abortion rates in general, it all comes down to prevention and planning.

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