GOP Lawmakers Aim to Force Vote on Bill to ‘End Infanticide’

GOP Lawmakers Aim to Force Vote on Bill to ‘End Infanticide’

Virginia Allen  @Virginia_Allen5 / April 13, 2021

Three Republican members of Congress are taking action to force a vote on the Born-Alive Abortion Survivors Protection Act, a bill that would require a baby born alive after an attempted abortion to receive the same level of medical care as a newborn. (Photo: Jill Lehmann Photography/Getty Images) 

Congressional Democrats have blocked a vote on the Born-Alive Abortion Survivors Protection Act more than 75 times in the past few years. Now, three Republican House members are seeking to force a vote on the bill. 

The bill does not restrict abortion, but only requires medical professionals to provide a baby who survives an abortion with the same level of medical care as any other newborn child. 

“The right to life is the most sacred, inalienable human right afforded to us in the United States,” Rep. Kat Cammack, R-Fla., said in a statement announcing a discharge petition for the Born-Alive Abortion Survivors Protection Act. 

Cammack is expected to file the petition Wednesday afternoon with House Minority Whip Steve Scalise, R-La., and Rep. Ann Wagner, R-Mo. 

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A discharge petition is a procedural tactic that requires a minimum of 218 signatures from House members, a majority of the 435-member body, to force a vote on legislation. 

The Susan B. Anthony List, a pro-life nonprofit group based in Washington, applauded Cammack, Scalise, and Wagner’s effort to protect the lives of all newborn babies after Cammack announced the discharge petition effort. 

“You would think *no one* would have a problem requiring health workers to provide medical care to a living, breathing infant born alive during an abortion attempt. You would be wrong,” the pro-life organization wrote on Twitter. https://platform.twitter.com/embed/Tweet.html?creatorScreenName=dailysignal&dnt=true&embedId=twitter-widget-0&features=eyJ0ZndfZXhwZXJpbWVudHNfY29va2llX2V4cGlyYXRpb24iOnsiYnVja2V0IjoxMjA5NjAwLCJ2ZXJzaW9uIjpudWxsfSwidGZ3X2hvcml6b25fdHdlZXRfZW1iZWRfOTU1NSI6eyJidWNrZXQiOiJodGUiLCJ2ZXJzaW9uIjpudWxsfX0%3D&frame=false&hideCard=false&hideThread=false&id=1381689411440623616&lang=en&origin=https%3A%2F%2Fwww.dailysignal.com%2F2021%2F04%2F13%2Fgop-lawmakers-aim-to-force-vote-on-bill-to-end-infanticide%2F&sessionId=a9bed7c00512f20eb7e095bc796841c73144f4f1&siteScreenName=dailysignal&theme=light&widgetsVersion=2d233ae%3A1618352735472&width=500px

“For too long, [House Speaker] Nancy Pelosi has blocked my commonsense legislation that protects the innocent lives of children born alive,” Wagner said in a statement. 

We must take a stand and tell her the American people want the Born-Alive Act passed and signed into law. 

This should not be a matter up for debate, and I hope every member of Congress signs this petition so these basic rights are enshrined into law.

More than 70% of Americans support the Born-Alive Act, according to Wagner and Scalise, who have repeatedly called on their Democratic colleagues to take action on the bill. 

Wagner and Scalise filed a discharge petition for the measure during the previous Congress. The filing received moresignatures within 24 hours than any other discharge petition to date. 

Every House Republican, along with three Democrats, signed the petition. However, none of the Democrats who signed the petition in 2019—Reps. Daniel Lipinski of Illinois, Ben McAdams of Utah, and Collin Peterson of Minnesota—is still in office. 

The discharge petition won’t expire during the 117th Congress. If the petition receives the required 218 signatures, whether this year or next, the Born-Alive Act would move to the floor for a vote. The petition will need all 211 Republicans to sign it, plus the signatures of seven Democrats, to reach the House floor. 

“Last Congress, Speaker Pelosi directed her radical caucus to block the Born-Alive Abortion Survivors Protection Act more than 75 times,” Scalise said in a statement. 

“Why are House Democrats refusing to allow a vote on this commonsense legislation that will save lives?” Scalise asked, adding that the “American people deserve to know where their representatives stand on taking steps to end infanticide.”

In addition to requiring babies born during a botched abortion to receive the same level of care as any other newborn, the Born-Alive Act also requires health care professionals to report any violations of the bill to law enforcement and penalizes the killing of a baby born alive with penalties of up to five years in prison. 

The bill also protects the mother of the child by giving her a civil cause of action and shielding her from prosecution for the death of a baby born alive after an abortion. 

“Providing a living newborn baby with proper medical care—regardless of the circumstances of his or her birth—should not be remotely controversial,” Melanie Israel, a research associate at The Heritage Foundation’s DeVos Center for Religion and Civil Society, told The Daily Signal. The Daily Signal is the multimedia news outlet of The Heritage Foundation.

“The vast majority of Americans support the goal of the Born-Alive bill. The abortion lobby is the radical outlier, and policymakers should listen to the American people they represent,” Israel said. “Protecting born-alive babies is a matter of fundamental human decency.”

Have an opinion about this article? To sound off, please email letters@DailySignal.com and we will consider publishing your remarks in our regular “We Hear You” feature. 

March 26, 2021

Office of Senator Tom Carper, Delaware
United States Senate
Washington, D.C. 20510

Dear Senator Carper,

I noticed that you signed a 2017 letter strongly supporting the filibuster. 
Why are you thinking about abandoning that view now?

Does your change of view have anything to do with Biden now being in office?


Democrats distance themselves from previous pro-filibuster stance, citing GOP obstruction

More than half of current Senate Democrats and VP Harris signed 2017 letter supporting filibuster when GOP was in control

Tyler Olson

By Tyler Olson | Fox News

As progressives push hard for Democrats to eliminate the legislative filibuster after gaining control of the Senate, House and the presidency, many Democratic senators are distancing themselves from a letter they signed in 2017 backing the procedure.

Sens. Susan Collins, R-Maine, and Chris Coons, D-Del., led a letter in 2017 that asked Republican Leader Mitch McConnell, R-Ky., and Democratic Leader Chuck Schumer, D-N.Y., to preserve the legislative filibuster. As it’s existed for decades, the filibuster requires 60 votes in order to end debate on a bill and proceed to a final vote.

“We are writing to urge you to support our efforts to preserve existing rules, practices, and traditions” on the filibuster, the letter said.

Besides Collins and Coons, 59 other senators joined on the letter. Of that group, 27 Democratic signatories still hold federal elected office. Twenty-six still hold their Senate seats, and Vice President Harris assumed her new job on Jan. 20, vacating her former California Senate seat.

Sen. Chris Coons, D-Del., speaks as the Senate Judiciary Committee hears from legal experts on the final day of the confirmation hearing for Supreme Court nominee Amy Coney Barrett, on Capitol Hill in Washington, Thursday, Oct. 15, 2020. Coons has softened his support for the legislative filibuster in recent years after leading an effort to protect it in 2017. (AP Photo/J. Scott Applewhite)

Sen. Chris Coons, D-Del., speaks as the Senate Judiciary Committee hears from legal experts on the final day of the confirmation hearing for Supreme Court nominee Amy Coney Barrett, on Capitol Hill in Washington, Thursday, Oct. 15, 2020. Coons has softened his support for the legislative filibuster in recent years after leading an effort to protect it in 2017. (AP Photo/J. Scott Applewhite)

But now, the momentum among Senate Democrats is for either full abolition of the filibuster or significantly weakening it. President Biden endorsed the latter idea Tuesday, announcing his support for a “talking filibuster.”

KAMALA HARRIS SUPPORTS CHANGE TO FILIBUSTER IN SENATE TO LIMIT MINORITY PARTY POWER

“I don’t think that you have to eliminate the filibuster, you have to do it what it used to be when I first got to the Senate back in the old days,” Biden told ABC. “You had to stand up and command the floor, you had to keep talking.”

The legislative filibuster has been a 60-vote threshold for what is called a “cloture vote” — or a vote to end debate on a bill — meaning that any 41 senators could prevent a bill from getting to a final vote. If there are not 60 votes, the bill cannot proceed.

The “talking filibuster” — as it was most recently seriously articulated by Sen. Jeff Merkley, D-Ore., in 2012 — would allow 41 senators to prevent a final vote by talking incessantly, around-the-clock, on the Senate floor. But once those senators stop talking, the threshold for a cloture vote is lowered to 51.

Harris’ office confirmed to Fox News Wednesday that she is now aligned with Biden on the filibuster issue. She’d previously taken an even more hostile position to the filibuster, saying she would fully “get rid” of it “to pass a Green New Deal” at a CNN town hall in 2019.

The legislative filibuster has been a 60-vote threshold for what is called a “cloture vote” — or a vote to end debate on a bill — meaning that any 41 senators could prevent a bill from getting to a final vote. If there are not 60 votes, the bill cannot proceed.

The “talking filibuster” — as it was most recently seriously articulated by Sen. Jeff Merkley, D-Ore., in 2012 — would allow 41 senators to prevent a final vote by talking incessantly, around-the-clock, on the Senate floor. But once those senators stop talking, the threshold for a cloture vote is lowered to 51.

Harris’ office confirmed to Fox News Wednesday that she is now aligned with Biden on the filibuster issue. She’d previously taken an even more hostile position to the filibuster, saying she would fully “get rid” of it “to pass a Green New Deal” at a CNN town hall in 2019.

Coons, who led the 2017 letter along with Collins, has also distanced himself from his previous stance.

Vice President Kamala Harris attends a ceremonial swearing-in for Sen. Patrick Leahy, D-Vt., as President Pro Tempore of the Senate on Capitol Hill in Washington, Thursday, Feb. 4, 2021. Harris has changed her stance on the legislative filibuster since signing a letter in 2017 backing it. (Michael Reynolds/Pool via AP)

Vice President Kamala Harris attends a ceremonial swearing-in for Sen. Patrick Leahy, D-Vt., as President Pro Tempore of the Senate on Capitol Hill in Washington, Thursday, Feb. 4, 2021. Harris has changed her stance on the legislative filibuster since signing a letter in 2017 backing it. (Michael Reynolds/Pool via AP) (AP)

BIDEN SUPPORTS CHANGING SENATE FILIBUSTER 

“I’m going to try my hardest, first, to work across the aisle,” he said in September when asked about ending the filibuster. “Then, if, tragically, Republicans don’t change the tune or their behavior at all, I would.”

Fox News reached out to all of the other 26 Democratic signatories of the 2017 letter, and they all either distanced themselves from that position or did not respond to Fox News’ inquiry.

“Less than four years ago, when Donald Trump was President and Mitch McConnell was the Majority Leader, 61 Senators, including more than 25 Democrats, signed their names in opposition to any efforts that would curtail the filibuster,” a GOP aide told Fox News. “Other than the occupant of the White House, and the balance of power in the Senate, what’s changed?”

“I’m interested in getting results for the American people, and I hope we will find common ground to advance key priorities,” Sen. Tim Kaine. D-Va., said in a statement. “If Republicans try to use arcane rules to block us from getting results for the American people, then we’ll have a conversation at that time.”

Added Sen. Mark Warner, D-Va: “I am still hopeful that the Senate can work together in a bipartisan way to address the enormous challenges facing the country. But when it comes to fundamental issues like protecting Americans from draconian efforts attacking their constitutional right to vote, it would be a mistake to take any option off the table.”

“Senator Stabenow understands the urgency of passing important legislation, including voting rights, and thinks it warrants a discussion about the filibuster if Republicans refuse to work across the aisle,” Robyn Bryan, a spokesperson for Sen. Debbie Stabenow, D-Mich., said.

FILE - In this Oct. 26, 2018, file photo, Sen.Bob Casey, D-Pa., speaks to reporters in the studio of KDKA-TV in Pittsburgh. Casey has reversed his stance on the legislative filibuster since signing a 2017 letter in support of it. (AP Photo/Gene J. Puskar, File)

FILE – In this Oct. 26, 2018, file photo, Sen.Bob Casey, D-Pa., speaks to reporters in the studio of KDKA-TV in Pittsburgh. Casey has reversed his stance on the legislative filibuster since signing a 2017 letter in support of it. (AP Photo/Gene J. Puskar, File)

Representatives for Sen. Bob Casey, D-Pa., pointed to recent comments he made on MSNBC.

“Yes, absolutely,” Casey said when asked if he would support a “talking filibuster” or something similar. “Major changes to the filibuster for someone like me would not have been on the agenda even a few years ago. But the Senate does not work like it used to.”

MCCONNELL SAYS SENATE WILL BE ‘100-CAR PILEUP’ IF DEMS NUKE FILIBUSTER

“I hope any Democratic senator who’s not currently in support of changing the rules or altering them substantially, I hope they would change their minds,” Casey added.

Representatives for Sen. Angus King, I-Vt., who caucuses with Democrats, meanwhile, references a Bangor Daily News editorial that said King was completely against the filibuster in 2012 but now believes it’s helpful in stopping bad legislation. It said, however, that King is open to “modifications” similar to a talking filibuster.

The senators who did not respond to questions on their 2017 support of the filibuster were Sens. Joe Manchin. D-W.Va.; Patrick Leahy, D-Vt.; Amy Klobuchar, D-Minn.; Jeanne Shaheen, D-N.H.; Michael Bennet, D-Colo.; Martin Heinrich, D-N.M.; Sherrod Brown, D-Ohio; Dianne Feinstein, D-Calif.; Kirsten Gillibrand, D-N.Y.; Brian Schatz, D-Hawaii; Cory Booker, D-N.J.; Maria Cantwell, D-Wash.; Maize Hirono, D-Hawaii; John Tester, D-Mont.; Tom Carper, D-Del.; Maggie Hassan, D-N.H.; Tammy Duckworth, D-Ill.; Jack Reed, D-R-I.; Ed Markey, D-Mass.; Sheldon Whitehouse, D-R.I.; and Bob Menendez, D-N.J.

Some of these senators, however, have addressed the filibuster in other recent comments.

Sen. Dianne Feinstein, D-Calif., on Wednesday was asked if she supported changing the filibuster threshold by CNN and said she is still opposed to the idea. “Not at this time,” Feinstein said.

Sen. Mazie Hirono, D-Hawaii, speaks to reporters on Capitol Hill in Washington, Thursday, Jan. 30, 2020, during the impeachment trial of President Donald Trump on charges of abuse of power and obstruction of Congress. Hirono has changed her opinion on the legislative filibuster since signing a 2017 letter supporting it. (AP Photo/Julio Cortez)

Sen. Mazie Hirono, D-Hawaii, speaks to reporters on Capitol Hill in Washington, Thursday, Jan. 30, 2020, during the impeachment trial of President Donald Trump on charges of abuse of power and obstruction of Congress. Hirono has changed her opinion on the legislative filibuster since signing a 2017 letter supporting it. (AP Photo/Julio Cortez)

Sen. Maize Hirono, D-Hawaii, meanwhile said last week she is already for getting rid of the current 60-vote threshold and thinks other Democrats will sign on soon.

“If Mitch McConnell continues to be totally an obstructionist, and he wants to use the 60 votes to stymie everything that President Biden wants to do and that we Democrats want to do that will actually help people,” Hirono said, “then I think the recognition will be among the Democrats that we’re gonna need to.”

The most recent talk about either removing or significantly weakening the filibuster was spurred by comments from Manchin that appeared to indicate he would be open to a talking filibuster. He said filibustering a bill should be more “painful” for a minority.

Manchin appeared to walk back any talk of a talking filibuster on Wednesday, however.

“You know where my position is,” he said. “There’s no little bit of this and a little bit — there’s no little bit here. You either protect the Senate, you protect the institution and you protect democracy or you don’t.”

Manchin and Sen. Kyrsten Sinema, D-Ariz., both committed to supporting the current form of the filibuster earlier this year. Sinema was not in the Senate in 2017.

Senate Minority Mitch McConnell, R-Ky., said their comments gave him the reassurance he needed to drop a demand that Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer, D-N.Y., put filibuster protections into the Senate’s organizing resolution.

But with Manchin seeming to flake at least in the eyes of some, other Democrats are beginning to push harder for filibuster changes.

I read this article about you:

Delaware, Maryland senators help sink bill to save babies born alive after abortion

By For The Dialog –   26 February 2019, 13:24  2144

WASHINGTON — The Senate in an evening vote Feb. 25 failed to advance a measure sponsored by Sen. Ben Sasse, R-Nebraska, to require that babies born alive after an abortion be given medical attention and “the same protection of law as any newborn.”

The Born-Alive Survivors Protection Act failed in a 53-44 vote. Sixty votes were needed to end a filibuster and bring forward the measure, which Sasse’s press office said was co-sponsored by half the Senate. Among the 44 voting against the measure were Delaware’s Chris Coons and Tom Carper and Maryland’s Ben Cardin and Chris Van Hollen.

“I want to ask each and every one of my colleagues whether we’re OK with infanticide,” Sasse said ahead of the vote. “This language is blunt. I recognize that and it’s too blunt for many people in this body. But frankly, that is what we’re talking about here today. Infanticide is what the Born-Alive Abortion Survivors Protection Act is actually about.”

Protecting babies who “are alive, born outside the womb after having survived a botched abortion … is what this is about,” he said.

Kristan Hawkins, president for Students for Life of America, called Sasse’s bill “the bare minimum standard for valuing infant life, as everyone should be able to look at a baby born during an abortion and understand that a humane response is required.”

“Too many important votes are forgotten, but this one won’t be,” she said in a statement issued after the vote. “These kinds of tactics in which a win is a loss can disillusion voters, but allowing infants to die after being born alive will rally pro-life Americans when it counts.”

On Feb. 4, Sasse had called for unanimous consent on his Born-Alive Abortion Survivors Protection Act. “Everyone in the Senate ought to be able to say unequivocally that killing that little baby is wrong. This doesn’t take any political courage,” he said from the floor.

In response, Sen. Patty Murray, D-Washington, blocked unanimous consent by objecting to the bill.

The next day the chairman of the U.S. bishops’ Committee on Pro-Life Activities called it “unconscionable” that the U.S. Senate failed to “unanimously declare to the nation that infanticide is objectively wrong.”

Naumann
Archbishop Joseph F. Naumann of Kansas City, Kan. (CNS photo/Tyler Orsburn)

“No newborn should be left to suffer or die without medical care. It is barbaric and merciless to leave these vulnerable infants without any care or rights,” Archbishop Joseph F. Naumann of Kansas City, Kansas, said in a Feb. 5 statement.

Senator I wanted to discuss abortion.

Francis Schaeffer shows the inconsistency of the pro choice views espoused by Justice Blackmun in his opinion in Roe v Wade:

Third, when the United States Supreme Court made its ruling about abortion on January 22, 1973, Mr. Justice Blackmun delivered the opinion of the Court. The first section in his opinion was titled “Ancient Attitudes.” In it he referred back to the pre-Christian law. He said, “Greek and Roman law afforded little protection to the unborn. If abortion was prosecuted in some places, it seems to have been based on a concept of a violation of the father’s right to his offspring. Ancient religion did not bar abortion.” Thus, as his first point, Mr. Justice Blackmun based his opinion on the practice of pre-Christian Greek and Roman law. Most people who read this did not realize the logical result concerning babies after their birth. Roman law permitted not only abortion but also infanticide. As we think this over, we ask ourselves, “Now that this door is open, how long will it be before infanticide is socially accepted and perhaps legalized?”

(Page 319) 

Advocates of Infanticide

It frightens us when we see the medical profession
acquiesce to, if not lead in, a trend which in our
judgment will carry us to destruction.  The loss of
humanness shown in allowing malformed babies to
starve to death is not a thing of the future.  It is being
put forward as the accepted thing right now in many
quarters.  All that is left is for it to become totally
accepted and eventually, for economic reasons,
made mandatory by an increasingly authoritarian
government in an increasingly selfish society.

In May 1973, James D. Watson, the Nobel Prize
laureate who discovered the double helix of DNA,
granted an interview to _Prism_ magazine, then a
publication of the American Medical Association.
_Time_ later reported the interview to the general
public, quoting Watson as having said,
If a child were not declared alive until three days
after birth, then all parents could be allowed the
choice only a few are given under the present
system.  The doctor could allow the child to die
if the parents so choose and save a lot of misery
and suffering.  I believe this view is the only
rational, compassionate attitude to have.

In January 1978, Francis Crick, also a Nobel
laureate, was quoted in the _Pacific News Service_
as saying,
. . . no newborn infant should be declared human
until it has passed certain tests regarding its
genetic endowment and that if it fails these tests
it forfeits the right to live.

In _Ideals of Life_, Millard S. Everett, who was
professor of philosophy and humanities at Oklahoma
A&M, writes,
My personal feeling– and I don’t ask anyone to
agree with me– is that eventually, when public
opinion is prepared for it, no child should be
admitted into the society of the living who
would be certain to suffer any social handicap–
for example, any physical or mental defect that
would prevent marriage or would make others
tolerate his company only from the sense of
mercy.
He adds, “This would imply not only eugenic
sterilization but also euthanasia due to accidents of
birth which cannot be foreseen.”44

Perhaps the paper most outspokenly advocating
infanticide was published in the prestigious
167-year-old _New England Journal of Medicine_.
In October 1973, Dr. Raymond S. Duff and Dr.
A.G.M. Campbell of the department of pediatrics at
Yale University School of Medicine wrote, “Moral
and Ethical Dilemmas in the Special-Care
Nursery.”45

Very few parents come of their own volition to a
physician and say, “My baby has a life not worthy to
be lived.”  Duff and Campbell say that the parents in
such a case are not in a condition to give “informed
consent” by themselves.  But any physician in the
emotional circumstances surrounding the birth of a
baby with any kind of a defect can, by innuendo if
not advice, prepare the family to make the decision
the physician wants them to make.  We do not
consider this “informed consent.”

Duff and Campbell acknowledge that the parents’
and …

Sincerely, 

Everette Hatcher III, 13900 Cottontail Lane, Alexander, AR 72002, ph 501-920-5733 everettehatcher@gmail.com

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