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House Republicans are ready to pass abortion legislation on “day one” if they regain Congress in the midterm elections, according to a senior GOP leader.
Representative Elise Stefanik, chair of the House GOP conference, said Republicans are united around the Born-Alive Abortion Survivor Protection Act that requires health care workers to hospitalize babies who survive abortions. and provides criminal penalties for offenders.
“The House Republican position that unifies all of our members — which all of our members are co-sponsors of — is the Born Alive Act that provides protections for babies born alive at 15 weeks,” Stefanik told Fox News Digital. “We’re a pro-life conference. We’re a pro-life Republican Party. That’s what we want to push forward from day one.”
The issue of abortion is receiving increased attention after a leaked Supreme Court draft opinion signaled that a majority of justices were prepared to overturn the landmark Roe v. Wade who legalized the right to abortion nationwide. If Roe is overturned, abortion regulation would be left to each state — unless Congress steps in and passes a national law.
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Democrats have sought to pass legislation to guarantee abortion rights nationwide, but the effort failed in the Senate this week with all Republicans and one Democrat – Sen. Joe Manchin of West Virginia – voting against advancing the Women’s Health Protection Act. Democrats argue the legislation is needed immediately because Republicans are determined to reduce access to abortion.
Asked by Fox News Digital if the Republican agenda would include banning abortion at the federal level, Stefanik said the only piece of legislation that has broad support is the Born Alive bill, which would be a priority.
The Born Alive legislation was introduced by Rep. Ann Wagner, R-Mo., and has the support of 203 Republicans in Congress.
Under the law, a health care provider could face up to 5 years in prison for failing to provide care to a baby who survived an abortion. A person who kills or attempts to kill a child born alive would be prosecuted for murder. Healthcare practitioners or others with knowledge of non-compliance with care requirements should report incidents to law enforcement – or face criminal prosecution.
“Killing a baby who was born alive is infanticide, there is no other way to say it,” the office of House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy, R-California, said in a statement on last month backing the legislation and blaming Democrats for wanting abortions “to be performed until birth.”
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Meanwhile, House Democrats rallied outside the Capitol on Friday to call for nationwide legislation to cement Roe in law. They condemned the Conservatives for wanting to roll back women’s rights that have been in place for almost 50 years.
“Already, Republicans across the country are rallying around a dangerous and extreme agenda to criminalize all forms of reproductive health care, including IVF, contraception, and post-miscarriage care. Think about it,” said House Speaker Nancy Pelosi, D-California. Friday.
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She chastised Senate Republicans for voting against the Women’s Health Protection Act and said the GOP wants “a nationwide ban on abortion.”
“Once Republicans destroy long-standing precedents and privacy rights, they intend to carry out an all-out attack on more of our rights, including access to contraception and equal wedding,” Pelosi said.
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“As Republicans seek to control and criminalize women’s reproductive health freedoms, Democrats fight to enshrine Roe v. Wade in law.”
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