Does a Baby Have a Right to a Mother? Sen. Lankford: 'A Baby Has a Right to a Mother Indeed'

Lauren Shank | November 30, 2022 | 4:52pm EST
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Sen. James Lankford (R-Okla.)  (Getty Images)
Sen. James Lankford (R-Okla.) (Getty Images)

(CNS News) – When asked whether a baby has a right to a mother, Sen. James Lankford (R-Okla.) said, “A baby has a right to life and a baby has a right to a mother.”

At the U.S. Capitol on Nov. 30, CNS News asked Sen. Lankford: “The Respect for Marriage Act, which passed the Senate yesterday, recognizes a right to same-sex marriage. Does a baby have a right to a mother?”

Lankford replied, “A baby has a right to life and a baby has a right to a mother indeed.”

When asked how this act could violate the right a baby has to a mother, Lankford said that it is still “undetermined at this point” and that there were “lots of questions and legal problems with this bill.”

He continued, “It opens up a tremendous amount of lawsuits for private entities – that will be a challenge that’s gonna’ be determined in the courts. And there are lots of nonprofits that do adoptions and do foster care and all those things – they’re gonna’ now face a whole new series of lawsuits coming at them.”

“It was one of the many reasons that I brought an amendment to try to change this bill dramatically, but we were unsuccessful in getting that amendment, obviously,” he said.

(Getty Images)
(Getty Images)

Lankford voted against passage of the Respect for Marriage Act, but the measure passed the Senate Tuesday by a vote of 61-36. Sen. Ben Sasse (R-Neb.), Sen. Pat Toomey (R-Penn.) and Sen. Raphael Warnock (D-Ga.) were the only three members that did not vote.

Twelve Republicans joined with 49 Democrats to pass the Respect for Marriage Act. Those Republicans were Susan Collins (Maine), Lisa Murkowski (Alaska), Rob Portman (Ohio), Thom Tillis (N.C.), Mitt Romney (Utah), Roy Blunt (Mo.), Richard Burr (N.C.), Shelley Moore Capito (W.Va.), Dan Sullivan (Alaska), Joni Ernst (Iowa) and Todd Young (Ind.).

As previously reported by CNS News, “If signed into law, which President Biden is expected to do, the Respect for Marriage Act would repeal the Defense of Marriage Act and essentially codify ‘gay marriage’ into federal law. For federal purposes, marriage would no longer be defined as being between one man and one woman.”

A summary of the Respect for Marriage Act states, “This bill provides statutory authority for same-sex and interracial marriages. Specifically, the bill repeals and replaces provisions that define, for purposes of federal law, marriage as between a man and a woman and spouse as a person of the opposite sex with provisions that recognize any marriage that is valid under state law. (The Supreme Court held that the current provisions were unconstitutional in United States v. Windsor in 2013.)


“The bill also repeals and replaces provisions that do not require states to recognize same-sex marriages from other states with provisions that prohibit the denial of full faith and credit or any right or claim relating to out-of-state marriages on the basis of sex, race, ethnicity, or national origin. (The Supreme Court held that state laws barring same-sex marriages were unconstitutional in Obergefell v. Hodges in 2015; the Court held that state laws barring interracial marriages were unconstitutional in Loving v. Virginia in 1967.) The bill allows the Department of Justice to bring a civil action and establishes a private right of action for violations.”

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