TribLIVE

| USWorld


 
Larger text Larger text Smaller text Smaller text | Order Photo Reprints

House panel approves legislation that would ban later-term abortions

Daily Photo Galleries

By The Associated Press
Wednesday, June 12, 2013, 6:12 p.m.
 

WASHINGTON — The House is girding for another wrenching debate on abortion.

A House panel on Wednesday approved legislation that would ban almost all abortions after a fetus reaches the age of 20 weeks.

Several recent court decisions have struck down similar state laws, and the GOP-backed bill has little future in the Democratic-led Senate, but the measure will give House conservatives a rare chance to reaffirm their social issue credentials.

The bill, named the “Pain-Capable Unborn Child Protection Act,” was approved by the House Judiciary Committee on a party-line 20-12 vote and could get a vote in the full House as early as next week.

House Republican leaders, concentrating on budgetary and jobs bills and investigating administration scandals, have largely avoided contentious social issues such as abortion, but anti-abortion conservatives have been spurred by the recent conviction of a Philadelphia abortion provider, Dr. Kermit Gosnell, for killing three babies born alive at his clinic.

“The terrifying facts uncovered during the course of the trial ... and successive reports of similar atrocities committed across the country, remind us how an atmosphere of insensitivity can lead to horrific brutality,” said committee chairman Bob Goodlatte, R-Va.

Bill sponsor Trent Franks, R-Ariz., and others argued that there is evidence — a contention Democrats say is unproven — that fetuses can feel pain after five months, justifying a ban on later abortions.

A federal court in May overturned a 20-week abortion ban in Arizona, saying that the law violated a woman's right to terminate a pregnancy before a fetus is viable. Viability is generally considered to start at 24 weeks.

Some nine other states have enacted similar bans and have faced court challenges.

 

 
 


Show commenting policy

Most-Read Nation

  1. 1686 shipwreck ‘like dinosaur’ being rebuilt for museum
  2. Cafeteria worker tried to stop Washington school shooter
  3. Philadelphia Mafia figure returned to prison for meeting friend
  4. Test confirms remains are missing Virginia student’s
  5. New York, New Jersey order 21-day quarantine of all in contact with Ebola virus
  6. Open encrypted messages by updating technology access law, FBI Director Comey says
  7. Lawyer turns down AG post
  8. 2 California deputies slain, suspect captured
  9. Seattle area school homecoming ‘prince’ guns down classmates
  10. Warhol bodyguard sued over hidden artwork
  11. Sampling of toxins under way at former steel plant in Kentucky
Subscribe today! Click here for our subscription offers.