Nadler: 'Particularly Morally Outrageous' to Ban Late-Term Abortions

Elizabeth Harrington | June 18, 2013 | 3:45pm EDT
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Rep. Jerrold Nadler (D-N.Y.) (AP)

( – Rep. Jerrold Nadler (D-N.Y.) said Tuesday it is “particularly morally outrageous” to ban abortions after five months of pregnancy.

“It is morally outrageous, frankly,” Nadler said about the Pain-Capable Unborn Child Protection Act (H.R. 1797), a bill that would ban abortions 20 weeks post-fertilization, or five months into pregnancy.

“Here we go again,” he said. “Every single year we have to go through the same nonsense with the same morally presumptuous, morally arrogant attitude that we know better. ‘We know better than women and their doctors. We know better about their health care. We know better about their moral choices in very personal decisions.’”

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The House is set to vote Tuesday on the bill. Pro-abortion Democrats gathered on Capitol Hill to oppose the measure.

“This bill is particularly morally outrageous,” Nadler said. “It is also particularly unconstitutional.”

Nadler said Republicans pushing the bill are “morally arrogant people” who have “decided that their moral outlooks are more important” than a woman’s health.

Nadler’s remarks came during a press conference to oppose the bill, led by Rep. Diana DeGette (D-Colo.) and Rep. Louise Slaughter (D-N.Y.), co-chairs of the House Pro-Choice Caucus.

Rep. Jan Schakowsky (D-Ill.) said a decision to have an abortion after five months should belong to women “and perhaps their spouses.”

“It’s the same Republican men who say that the reach of government is just too great, who want to reach right inside women’s bodies and decide what they should do, what we should do, the kinds of decisions that should only belong to women and their doctors and perhaps their spouses,” she said.

Rep. Eric Swalwell (D-Calif.) said the bill is a sequel to the “Republican war on women.”

Rep. Trent Franks (R-Ariz.) has said he sponsored the Pain-Capable Unborn Child Protection Act in the wake of the Kermit Gosnell trial in Philadelphia, a late-term abortionist convicted of killing three babies who survived abortions outside of the womb, by cutting their spinal cords with scissors.

Franks argued that babies past 20 weeks gestation have the ability to feel pain, and thus abortions at this stage should be outlawed.

“The trial of Kermit Gosnell exposed late abortions for what they really are: relocated infanticide,” Franks said earlier this month. “I pray we use this as a ‘teachable moment,’ in the words of President Obama, and can agree that, at the very least, we are better than dismembering babies who can feel every excruciating moment.”

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