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Pennsylvania Senate Judiciary Committee joins House in approving ban on dismemberment abortions

by | Jul 12, 2016

Bill now moves to full Senate

By Maria Gallagher, Legislative Director, Pennsylvania Pro-Life Federation

dismembermentabortion32reThe national campaign to protect vulnerable preborn babies and their mothers from the harm of brutal dismemberment abortions has taken another important step forward.

Pennsylvania’s Senate Judiciary Committee, by a nearly two-to-one margin, has advanced House Bill 1948, a common sense bill that would ban the gruesome practice of dismemberment abortion, in which a living unborn baby is torn, limb by limb, from a mother’s womb.

The legislation, which previously passed the House by an overwhelming, bipartisan, 132-65 margin, also updates state law to reflect the ever-changing landscape of fetal viability. Pennsylvania banned late-term abortions long ago, barring abortion after 24 weeks’ gestation. House Bill 1948 would move the ban to 20 weeks, based on the advancements medical science has made in saving premature babies.

The Judiciary Committee’s wise decision means that the full Senate can now vote on the bill and send it to Governor Tom Wolf.

A ban on dismemberment abortions is already on the books in six states.

Gov. Wolf, who once served as an abortion center escort for Planned Parenthood (the nation’s largest abortion operation), has threatened to veto the bill. If he were to take such action, he clearly would be thwarting the will of the people, since a Communication Concepts poll last year found 61 percent of Pennsylvanians support a ban on dreadful dismemberment abortions.

The survey indicated that support was actually higher among women—64 percent—as opposed to men—58 percent. In fact, a majority of Republicans, Democrats, and Independents all agreed with the ban.

The brutality of dismemberment abortions is undeniable, except to those who refuse to see. In the U.S. Supreme Court Gonzales v. Carhart decision, the High Court wrote, “No one would dispute that, for many, D&E is a procedure itself laden with the power to devalue human life.”

The court decision also stated, “The Court has given state and federal legislatures wide discretion to pass legislation in areas where there is medical and scientific uncertainty.”

And how do abortionists describe dismemberment abortions? Consider the words of Dr. Warren Hern, a Colorado abortionist who wrote a textbook on abortion practices: “…there is no possibility of denial of an act of destruction by the operator [of a D&E abortion]. It is before one’s eyes. The sensation of dismemberment flows through the forceps like an electric current.”

In Pennsylvania and across the nation, eyes are being opened to the horror of dismemberment abortions. Such a heinous practice should not be tolerated in a civilized society—especially one dedicated to the proposition that all men and women are created equal.

Categories: Legislation