South Carolina Republican Lindsey Graham introduced a companion to the House-passed 20-week abortion ban Thursday.
“At twenty weeks, mothers are encouraged to speak and sing as the baby can recognize the voice of the mother,” Graham said in a statement. “The question for the American people is, ‘Should we be silent when it comes to protecting these unborn children entering the sixth month of pregnancy? Or is it incumbent on us to speak up and act on their behalf? I say we must speak up and act.”
Graham’s bill, the Pain Capable Unborn Child Protection Act, currently has 33 co-sponsors.
“With all of the innovative medical treatments now available, more Americans are realizing that we are talking about children that deserve protection and overwhelmingly believe that we need a law like this,” Ohio Republican Sen. Rob Portman added. “The unborn are the most vulnerable members of our society, and I am committed to ongoing efforts to protect innocent life.”
Pro-life and pro-choice advocates are already marshalling their forces to support and oppose respectively.
“It is time that the law reflects our society’s desire to protect the innocent. Introducing this bill, already passed by the House, is step one in allowing a fair debate in the deliberative body on the issue of late-term abortion in this country,” Penny Nance, CEO and President of the pro-life Concerned Women for America Legislative Action Committee (CWALAC), said.
NARAL Pro-choice America released a new 60-second ad featuring a pregnant mother of two discussing a late-term abortion she had due to a fetal abnormality.
“Sen. Graham and his colleagues seem completely ignorant of the real, far-too-often tragic stories of women facing a decision to have an abortion later in their pregnancy,” Ilyse Hogue, president of NARAL Pro-Choice America, said. “Instead of playing politics with women’s lives, they should stop to listen to stories like Dana Weinstein, whose much-wanted pregnancy was met with a heartbreaking diagnosis every family dreads.
The Republican-controlled House passed its version by a vote of 228-196 in June.