The U.S. Senate will soon debate a proposed ban on abortions at 20 weeks – but according to a high-profile senator, it may be years before such a ban becomes law.
The House on Wednesday passed the Pain-Capable Unborn Child Protection Act (H.R. 36) by a vote of 237-189, sending the bill to the Senate where it will take 60 votes even to consider the measure. While proponents of the bill want to change the filibuster policy so only a majority vote will be required, Senator Lindsey Graham (R-South Carolina) (above) explained during a press conference why he's opposed to doing so.
"The best way to protect the pro-life issue and to pass this bill is to build consensus and get 60 votes," stated the senator. "And I can tell you that during the Obama years, there was a pretty radical pro-abortion agenda that was stopped time and time again because of the 60-vote requirement."
A bill banning partial-birth abortions took years and several court challenges to gain passage and Supreme Court approval. According to Graham, enough senators were educated during that process to eventually pass the measure. If H.R. 36 were to undergo a similarly long process, even then the legislation would be challenged, said Graham.
"So we're trying to convince the courts that legislative bodies like the Congress and at the state level have a legitimate and compelling state interest to protect a child at the fifth month of development from excruciating pain that would come from an abortion," he stated.
In Roe v. Wade, which legalized abortion in 1973, the Supreme Court ruled viability of the preborn baby could be a legal issue, and science tells the public more about viability now than it did then.