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Andy H.
Republican MD 1

About Rep. Andy
  • Forty Years of Victims’ Legacy of Abortion

    by Representative Andy Harris

    Posted on 2013-01-22

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    HARRIS. I want to thank the gentleman from New Jersey for taking a pause every year to let us review what happened 40 years ago and what's happened since. Because some 40 years ago, obviously the Supreme Court decided that it was no longer the State's prerogative to decide what laws could regulate abortion. We know some of the consequences of that: We know we have third trimester abortions; we have abortions for sex selection; we have abortions without the consent or even the notification of parents when minors are involved. That's the path we've gone down. But as the majority says, much has changed in 40 years and deserves reevaluation.

    {time} 1610 I'm an obstetric anesthesiologist. I've spent 25 years in the labor and delivery suite always wondering about the hypocrisy of being in a labor and delivery suite doing everything we could to save a 24-week baby, while across the corridor, 24-week babies were dismembered under what Roe v. Wade allowed under the law of the land.

    The majority leader is right: science has changed tremendously. Why, 40 years ago, we didn't have the Human Genome Project. We didn't realize the richness and diversity of the human genome, which only strengthened the notion that each and every human being is absolutely unique from the moment of conception. And that's in every embryology textbook you can look into. Every human being is unique from the moment of conception. And now, as the majority leader said, we have 3-D and 4- D ultrasound. We can see these human beings that are not blobs of tissue; they are human beings. So maybe we need to revisit what Roe v. Wade said.

    Let me tell you a story that really makes you think about revisiting this because, as you know, we spend hundreds of millions of dollars to fund organizations whose real sole purpose is to end life through abortion and very little to help the pregnancy centers that the majority leader spoke of. But in a pregnancy center north about 7 years ago--it's a pregnancy center in Baltimore--a woman speaking Spanish called one afternoon. She was on political asylum in the United States from El Salvador. She was single, had two children already, and was pregnant with a third. She called the pregnancy center, actually, to get a referral for an abortion. That day, by coincidence, maybe the grace of God, a counselor was there who spoke Spanish and spoke to that woman. That woman really wanted to keep her child; but as many women facing abortion, she was in a period of crisis. She needed help, not the help that a Planned Parenthood would offer, but the help that this pregnancy center offered, by helping her through her pregnancy, giving her the support she needed, the money she needed, and the things she needed to have that child.

    Now, I know that story because that Spanish-speaking counselor was my wife. Seven-year-old Jennifer comes over to our house now. I look into her eyes, and I wonder if anyone is ever going to tell her the real story of what almost happened and how is someone going to look in her eyes and tell Jennifer that she was better off because of Roe v. Wade.

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