Hire More Heroes Act of 2014—Motion to Proceed—Continuedby Senator Lindsey Graham
Posted on 2014-05-13
GRAHAM. Mr. President, I have a unanimous consent request that I
will make in a moment to kind of set the stage for what I am asking the
Senate to consider. We will be asking that we schedule a vote on two
pieces of legislation: the Pain-Capable Unborn Child Protection Act, S.
1670, which is my legislation; and S. 1696, the Women's Health
Protection Act, by Senator Blumenthal.
Very briefly, what I am trying to do is to have an opportunity for the body to talk about two pieces of legislation that relate to the abortion issue, the role of the Federal Government. Very quickly, my legislation would ban abortion at the 20-week period--the fifth month of pregnancy--based on the theory that the child can feel pain at that point in the pregnancy and that the standard of care for the medical community is that you cannot operate on an unborn fetus at the 20-week period without administering anesthesia, and the reason for that is because the child can feel pain.
There have been individuals born at the 20-week period who have survived. But the theory of the case is not based on the medical viability under Roe vs. Wade; it is a new theory that the State has a compelling interest in protecting an unborn child at this stage of pregnancy. The partial-birth abortion ban, which applies at 24 weeks, is backed up to 20 weeks.
Here is what medical journals tell parents to do at 20 weeks: An unborn child can hear and respond to sounds. Talk or sing. The unborn child enjoys hearing your voice.
It is a whole list of things about the unborn child in the 20-week period.
We are one of seven countries that allow abortions at this stage in the pregnancy, along with China, North Korea, Vietnam, Singapore, Canada, and the Netherlands.
So I would ask the body to consider having a debate on my legislation about whether we should limit elective abortions at the 20-week period and also a debate on Senator Blumenthal's legislation that basically would allow the courts to set aside several State restrictions on abortion. We are going to present a series of actions at the State level. I think his legislation would allow the courts to have a literal construction in terms of being able to strike down these provisions. I disagree with my good friend. We are good friends, although we have a different view. The Senator from Connecticut made a statement when he introduced the bill that every Senator should be on the record when it comes to this legislation. I agree. I hope every Senator would be on the record when it comes to my legislation.
Mr. President, I ask unanimous consent that at a time to be determined by the majority leader, in consultation with the Republican leader, the Senate proceed to consideration of S. 1670, the Pain- Capable Unborn Child Protection Act, and S. 1696, the Women's Health Protection Act; that there be up to 8 hours of debate equally divided in the usual form, to run concurrently; that there be no amendments, points of order, or motions in order; that upon the use or yielding back of the time, the Senate proceed to vote on S. 1670; that following the disposition of S. 1670, the Senate proceed to vote on S. 1696; and that both bills be subject to a 60-vote affirmative threshold for passage.
The PRESIDING OFFICER. Is there objection? The Senator from Connecticut.