Sen. Lindsey Graham Introduces Bill Protecting Babies Past 20 Weeks
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: November 7, 2013
Contact: Mallory Quigley, 703-380-6674
SBA List President Joins Graham & Pro-life Leaders for Historic Press Conference
Washington, D.C. – This morning Senator Lindsey Graham (R-SC) will hold a press conference to introduce the Pain Capable Unborn Child Protection Act. Marjorie Dannenfelser, president of the national pro-life group the Susan B. Anthony List (SBA List) will join Senator Graham and other pro-life leaders in support of this historic legislation, which would protect babies beginning at 20 weeks, or more than halfway through pregnancy.
Prepared remarks from Marjorie Dannenfelser:
Thank you, Senator Graham, and my dear friends and leaders for life.
We stand here at a historic crossroads. Forty years ago the Supreme Court of the United States issued a fiat that, frankly, shook the world. It declared that children before birth lacked the most essential of rights – the right to life – and it struck down the laws of all 50 states that had protected the unborn and their mothers for decades. It did so without constitutional warrant, inventing a free-floating “right to privacy” not found anywhere in the language of our founding documents.
Then, nearly two decades later, the Court issued another edict. In Planned Parenthood v. Casey it reaffirmed Roe v. Wade, musing about “the right to define one’s own concept of meaning, of the universe,” and calling all Americans to accept the Court’s musings as the final answer on abortion.
But for all its power and prestige, the Court has shown itself unable to accomplish the one thing that would allow it to settle the abortion issue. It has proven itself unable to erase the human faces of the mother and the baby. The consequence: a nation continually ill-at ease because it's conscience cannot find rest in our decision over how to treat two of the most vulnerable members of our society, pregnant woman in crisis and her child.
Today, we gather to once more show those human faces to the world. The Court's advice to ponder the cosmos for answers leads us away from solution. Instead, we look into our hearts, we consult our founding documents and the Author of our liberties, and we reason, together with our American big hearted community, with both common sense and compassion.
What we propose today is simple and foundational: the child in the womb is a member of the human family. At six months and even earlier that child suffers excruciating pain from the cruel dismemberment of its body or the piercing of its heart.
Whether we as a nation should continue to authorize and practice the killing of these innocent members of our families is a great civilizational question. Anything less is unworthy of us as a free and generous people who wish that resounding phrase “Equal Justice Under Law” to be something more than an echo of some lost dream.
Polls of the American people show that by vast majorities they see the same human faces we do. Men and women, Republicans and Democrats and independents, thoroughly pro-life or merely troubled by how far the abortion license has gone, want to see this law passed. They know that at least 15,000 human beings are destroyed at this stage of life every year in our nation (according to the Alan Guttmacher Institute). They are showing in state after state they are ready to turn the corner and say, “Enough, there must be a better way.”
Senator Graham, this is the Susan B. Anthony List's top priority. We will fight with every fiber of its being on every front -- political and electoral -- for the passage of this bill soon and for its signing into law. The infliction of pain and death on the innocent adds new layers of grief to our problems. I believe that future decades will mark this day as one when America lived up to its greatness and charted a new course – a course for life, for women and children, and for hope.
Recent national polling by Quinnipiac, National Journal, Huffington Post, NBC/Wall Street Journal, and Washington Post/ABC News all found that a plurality or majority of Americans support limiting abortion after 20 weeks gestation and that women support the measure in higher proportions than men.
The Susan B. Anthony List and its affiliated Political Action Committees, the SBA List Candidate Fund and Women Speak Out PAC, are dedicated to pursuing policies and electing candidates who will reduce and ultimately end abortion. To that end, the SBA List emphasizes the education, promotion, mobilization, and election of pro-life women at all levels of government. The SBA List is a network of more than 365,000 pro-life Americans nationwide.