House passes late term abortion ban
You would think after the Gosnell trial, the vote would have been unanimous. Instead, Democrats called the ban on abortions after 20 weeks an attack on women's and reproductive rights.
The House voted Tuesday to impose a nationwide ban on abortions after 22 weeks of pregnancy over Democratic objections that the bill represents a dramatic attempt by Republicans to restrict abortion rights.
As expected, the vote fell out mostly along party lines in a 228-196 vote -- just six Democrats voted for it, and six Republicans opposed it.
Democrats voting for the bill were Reps. Henry Cuellar (Texas), Dan Lipinski (Ill.), Jim Matheson (Utah), Mike McIntyre (N.C.), Collin Peterson (Minn.) and Nick Rahall (W.Va.). Republicans voting against it were Reps. Paul Broun (Ga.), Charlie Dent (Pa.), Rodney Frelinghuysen (N.J.), Richard Hanna (N.Y.), Jon Runyan (N.J.) and Rob Woodall (Ga.).
With limited exceptions, the legislation would ban the abortion of a fetus younger than 20 weeks old, or at 22 weeks of pregnancy under a different measuring system. The ban would be backed by possible fines against doctors, as well as prison sentence of as many as five years.
As controversial as the bill is, however, today's House vote likely ends the process in Congress, as the Democratic Senate is not expected to consider it at all. President Obama threatened to veto the measure on Monday.
"It is clear that the members who approved this bill, the all-male Republican members on the House Judiciary Committee, are not only disinterested in protecting the well-being of women, but are also disinterested in the professional opinion of the medical community," she said.
Republicans said a major reason the bill is needed is to tighten abortion law in light of the Dr. Kermit Gosnell trial, in which the Pennsylvania abortion doctor was convicted of murdering several infants born alive after failed abortions.
It was also charged during the gruesome trial that Gosnell put women's health at risk by performing abortions in an unsterile environment.
"This is an area that has overwhelming public support, and it is indeed an appropriate response to Kermit Gosnell's house of horrors," Blackburn said. "What this does is to limit abortion at the sixth month of pregnancy, and includes exceptions, so that we can send the clearest possible message to the American people that we do not support more Gosnell-like abortions."
Of course Republicans are "disinterested" in protecting the well being of women. The GOP goes out of its way to hurt women - deliberately. Just ask Democratic Rep. Louise Slaughter, who says that Republicans think rape is "not so bad":
"I'm of the opinion now ... that if you really were to question all of them, that there is a sort of continuity of thought that rape is really not so bad and that the likelihood of getting pregnant is small," Slaughter told a press conference.
I love it when Democrats seek to elevate the level of debate and discourse.
As mentioned above, the Senate won't touch this bill, which means that all the Kermit Gosnell's out there can rest easy. Democrats have got your back.