Lindsey Graham Introduces Bill Banning Abortions Five Months Into Pregnancy

Aaron Bandler
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Posted: Jun 11, 2015 2:30 PM
Lindsey Graham Introduces Bill Banning Abortions Five Months Into Pregnancy

Senator Lindsey Graham introduced a pro-life bill at a press conference Thursday with pro-life leaders.

The bill, titled the "Pain Capable Unborn Child Protection Act", would make abortions illegal on unborn babies determined to be at least 20 weeks old, with exceptions in the cases of rape and incest if reported 48 hours prior to the abortion and when the life of the mother is at risk.

Graham called the legislation "simple, yet groundbreaking at the same time."

"Do you believe that at 20 weeks in the pregnancy, five months, when medical encyclopedias are encouraging young parents to sing to their child because that's when they can recognize their voice... does the government have a legitimate compelling interest to protect that baby?" Graham asked. "I say yes."

Graham pointed out that when operations are performed on unborn babies at the age of 20 weeks, anesthesia is used on the baby, which would imply that they can feel pain at that point in time.

"The reason we want to protect that baby is they're well on their way to becoming viable," Graham said. "In my view, they're a part of who we are. I want Americans to think long and hard about abortions after 20 weeks."

Punishment for performing an illegal abortion under this law is up to five years in jails and/or fines. A woman on whom an illegal abortion is performed on will not face punishment under the law.

Graham also pointed out that America is one of seven countries to allow abortions at the 20-week stage of the pregnancy, a list that includes China and North Korea.

"This is not the America I yearn for," Graham said. "I yearn for an America that cares about people in all phases of life, and at 20 weeks you have achieved a milestone. If I have anything to say about it, we will fight for you at 20 weeks."

Graham wasn't sure how many votes they will get or when it will be signed into law, but he was confident that it would eventually become law.

"Over time, we will win," Graham said.

During the Q&A, Graham was asked if the Supreme Court would uphold the law if it passed.

"I think science is on our side and the law will be on our side," Graham said.

Leaders of pro-life groups, such as Tony Perkins of the Family Research Council and Carol Tobias of the National Right to Life Committee, spoke at the press conference as well.

"At the Family Research Council, we wholeheartedly support this bill," Perkins said.

The House of Representatives passed a companion bill back in May, which President Obama has threatened to veto.