Gosnell resolution blocked

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A Senate resolution aimed at investigating and correcting the policies which led to the illegal abortion practices of Philadelphia abortionist Kermit Gosnell was blocked Monday evening.

Utah Republican Sen. Mike Lee attempted to hotline the resolution to express “the sense of the Senate that Congress and the States should investigate and correct abusive, unsanitary, and illegal abortion practices” Monday evening, but an unknown senator objected to its unanimous passage, according to Lee’s office.

“It is difficult to imagine why anyone would object to a non-binding resolution calling on Congress to investigate these alleged disturbing, horrific, and illegal abortion practices committed by Kermit Gosnell and others,” Lee said in a statement.

“With numerous reports of similar instances surfacing around the country, the need for greater regulatory oversight of these so-called clinics is so plainly obvious it strains the limits of disbelief to think all members of the Senate would not agree,” he added. “The resolution is simply an affirmation that we as a country — a moral and compassionate society — have an interest in acting to save the lives of innocent women and children, and to prevent these kinds of heinous acts from happening to anyone again.”

Lee’s resolution, which has 11 co-sponsors, highlighted the crimes alleged against Gosnell, who faces more than 250 criminal charges, including first-degree murder charges for the deaths of four babies born alive in attempted abortions and a third-degree murder charge for a woman who died in 2009 during an abortion from a drug overdose.

“[T]he Report of the Grand Jury documented a pattern, over a period of 2 decades, at the Women’s Medical Society of Philadelphia of untrained and uncertified personnel performing abortions, non-medical personnel administering medications, grossly unsanitary and dangerous conditions, violations of law regarding storage of human remains, and, above all, instances of willful murder of infants born alive by severing their spinal cords,” the resolution reads in part.

Lee said the Gosnell case “should be a wake-up call.”

“The lack of oversight at abortion facilities puts women’s lives at risk and leads to the kind of unconscionable practices we have seen recently,” Lee said in a statement Monday. “The Senate should formally recognize that this is a problem in our country and we have a responsibility to investigate the causes, review the effects of certain public policies, and determine what we can do to prevent any woman from being subjected to these reprehensible practices again.”

Tuesday, the left-wing ThinkProgress blog claimed that the policies for which Lee is advocating actually lead women to go to clinics like Gosnell’s Women’s Medical Society.

“Pushing to tighten restrictions on all abortion providers ends up forcing safe, legal clinics to close their doors,” an article published at the website read. “And that ultimately limits women’s access to the reproductive care they need, leading some desperate women to resort to unsafe abortion services when they’re left with no other options.”

Lee’s resolution states, “Congress and States should gather information about and correct abusive, unsanitary, and illegal abortion practices and the interstate referral of women and girls to facilities engaged in dangerous or illegal second- and third-trimester procedures.”

It further calls for the Senate to conduct investigations and hearings on abortions performed at and near a fetus’ point of viability and “evaluate the extent to which such abortions involve violations of the natural right to life of infants who are born alive or are capable of being born alive, and therefore are entitled to equal protection under the law.”

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