The Pain-Capable Unborn Child Protection Act, a bill that would create a federal ban on abortions that take place after the 20th week of pregnancy, was defeated in the United States Senate Monday night. The Senate fell short of the 60 votes needed to break a filibuster and proceed to a simple majority vote on the bill.
Two Republicans, Sens. Susan Collins, R-Maine, and Lisa Murkowski, R-Alaska, joined with the Democrats to vote against breaking a filibuster. Three pro-life Democrats voted for the ban.
The 20-week point is approximately halfway through a woman’s pregnancy. Parents can know the baby’s sex. At 20 weeks, the baby is roughly the size of a banana, weighing about 10.2 ounces and measuring approximately 6.5 inches from crown to rump. At 21 weeks, the baby can be measured from “head to toe.”
At this point in the pregnancy, the baby can hear her mother’s heartbeat and voice. The baby’s hair is starting to grow. Her body, fully formed, is performing somersaults in the womb. The baby’s eyes are working, and she can perceive light. The baby has fingerprints, yawns, and sucks her thumb.
Also, at this stage of the pregnancy, the baby in the womb can feel pain. This means that during the abortion procedure, the baby can feel as her limbs are torn off with forceps and pulled from the mother’s womb.
As Townhall’s Guy Benson noted on Twitter, supporting a ban on abortions after 20 weeks is a mainstream position. Recent polling shows that even self-described “pro-choice” Americans support significant restrictions on abortion. Six in ten Americans support banning abortions after the 20-week point of pain.
\Abortion is cruel and inhumane. It is an evil thing. And today roughly half of the United States Senate, including two Republicans, voted to continue the practice even when a baby can feel pain.