Fetal Pain in the Press

Scientific research shows that unborn babies can feel pain at 20 weeks fetal age. This truth is penetrating the conscience of our nation. In June, the U.S House of Representatives passed the "Pain-Capable Unborn Child Protection Act", H.R 1797. The scientific premise behind this bill is so convincing that eleven states, including Louisiana, have already enacted similar legislation. These states are following the majority of the world when it comes to abortion laws. There are only three other countries in the world--China, Canada and North Korea--that allow late abortions.

Our nation, which was founded on the principle that all have the unalienable right to life, is reconsidering their abortion stance. After mainstream media finally decided to cover the trial of abortionist Kermit Gosnell, America saw the ugly face of abortion. “Choice” supporters declared Gosnell's "clinic" a criminal enterprise, not a health care facility. However, abortion "clinics" have never been healthcare facilities.

The Gosnell case forced America to ponder the question, “What is the difference between violently dismembering a newborn infant versus a baby in the womb? While Gosnell used a scalpel on many of his victims, some abortionists prefer vacuums and poisons. Gosnell killed 23-week-old babies born alive, while other abortionists kill in utero.  Regardless of method or location, their victim's fate is the same--an excruciatingly painful death.  Still, some pro-abortion supporters refuse to see that Gosnell’s killings are no different than those that take place every day. How can they be so blinded by their dedication to "choice", that even Gosnell's house of horrors didn't faze them?

Thankfully this abortion-on-demand mentality does not represent all Americans, and especially not all Louisianans. Take a look:

·         Nationally, a Washington Post poll declared that the majority of Americans support protecting human life in the last five months of pregnancy. 

·         In the same poll that was referenced on page 1, 79% of Louisianans stated that they did not support abortion past the third trimester of pregnancy.

Our Public Officials Must Decide

With the passage of H.R. 1797 in the U.S. House, the priority of the pro-life movement must be having a fair vote in the U.S. Senate on this critical legislation.
Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid, the gatekeeper for securing that vote, in a statement following the passing of H.R 1797 said that the nation shouldn't focus on "fringe issues" like late abortion.

However, he failed to realize it is those who support late abortion that are on the most radical fringe of the pro-abortion movement. In fact, only 5% of Louisianans support abortion-on-demand through all stages of pregnancy.  Because of this, Louisiana Right to Life has asked Senator Reid to reconsider his statement by reviewing medical and scientific developments along with public opinion.

On September 30th, 2013 Louisiana Right to Life, in conjunction with Senator David Vitter, Congressmen Charles Boustany, Bill Cassidy, John Fleming, Senate President John Alario (author of the 2012 Louisiana Pain-Capable Unborn Child Protection Act), and Senator Sharon Weston Broosent composed a letter to Senator Reid asking him to schedule this legislation for a vote.  Unfortunately, Senator Mary Landrieu was not willing to sign the letter.

In a Weekly Standard article published on July 26th, 2013, journalist John McCormick writes that when he asked Senator Landrieu about whether she supports H.R. 1797, Senator Landrieu said the following:

“I’m going to look at it. I’ve voted to end late-term abortions,” Landrieu said, referring to her vote for the partial-birth abortion ban.
“I do support, you know, the current constitutional outline which provides for decisions to be made which are very private in, you know, the early stages of pregnancy,” Landrieu continued. “So I’m going to have to look at that bill and make a decision. I’ve opposed late-term abortion, but 20 weeks is midterm.”

“Take a Look ” Advertisements & Press Conferences 

In response to Landrieu’s statement, on Sunday October 6th, Louisiana Right to Life launched newspaper advertisements in every major Louisiana paper encouraging Senator Landrieu to “take a look” at the humanityof the unborn child.  From our vantage point, the stage of the woman's pregnancy shouldn't determine personhood. As Dr. Seuss said, “a person is a person, no matter how small”. 


As a nation that supports human equality, and a nation that looks down on the atrocities of Kermit Gosnell, can late abortions continue? This is the question Senator Landrieu must answer.

As Congress moves one step closer to defending all human life by passing H.R. 1797 in the House of Representatives, will Senator Landrieu do so as well?
If we have any hope to pass this critical legislation, we need both of our U.S. Senators standing with us. We encourage you to contact Senator Landrieu today and ask her to support protecting unborn babies who feel pain!

Louisiana Right to Life also held three press conferences around the state asking Mary Landrieu to co-sponsor the Pain-Capable Unborn Child Protection Act. To read our press releases and watch our press conference click below: