When the Pain-Capable Unborn Child Protection Act was taken off the table in Congress last week, pro-life groups were justifiably upset. After all, with a new GOP majority in both Houses of Congress, it seemed as if this bill, which would protect unborn babies after 5 months, would finally get one step closer to becoming reality. Yet, thanks to paranoid legislators such as Representatives Renee Ellmers (R-NC) and Charlie Dent (R-PA), who worried that such a bill would hurt the Republican Party’s chances with women, they scrapped it and replaced it with a more watered down pro-life law.
Ellmers was particularly concerned with language in the Pain-Capable Act which stated that women must report a rape to the police. It is this requirement, she argued, that would make the GOP seem unsympathetic to women. In an op-ed regarding the fallout from last week, Ellmers defended her decision to halt the legislation and had some choice words for her critics. Here is the relevant excerpt:
As any member of Congress should do when apprehensive with language in a bill, my colleagues and I took our concerns to leadership, and we held a discussion within the family of our Republican Conference. I remain disappointed that the concern for the language of mandatory reporting of rape to law enforcement held by House Republican women and many men were not addressed before our leadership made the decision to pull the bill from the House floor in the eleventh hour. Additionally, I am appalled by the abhorrent and childish behaviors from some of the leaders of the outside groups.
I have to ask Rep. Ellmers: Since when is it ‘abhorrent’ to stand up for life? The efforts of pro-life organizations, through their tireless demonstrations and compassionate campaigns, have helped change hearts and minds and saved thousands of babies from abortion.
LifeNews points out that Ellmers has succeeded in doing a complete 360 on this bill. In 2013, she proudly spoke on behalf of the same legislation, saying that the bill would protect both unborn children and women. Her sudden change of heart today is odd at best.
The truth is, slamming pro-life groups will not put more women in the GOP’s camp. This bill had the chance to not only save more unborn babies, but more mothers from the pain of mental abuse, guilt, regret, and other forms of depression.
Despite the name calling, pro-lifers can be comforted to know the Pain-Capable Act is making headway outside of Washington. It is already law in 10 states, with more looking poised to follow.