Since the Roe v. Wade Supreme Court decision 46 years ago, we have lost millions of innocent lives to abortion. Every loss of human life is a tragedy, but it has been an especially tough couple of weeks for those of us fighting to protect the unborn.
Being pro-life isn’t about being Republican or Democrat – it’s about protecting ten fingers, ten toes, and one precious heartbeat. This horrific practice has become disturbingly commonplace over the past few decades, and the recent enactment of legislation in New York, coupled with a similar proposal in Virginia, would allow abortions up until the moment of birth – long after babies begin to feel pain at 20 weeks. Simply put, that is very frightening.
We were heartened by President Trump’s declaration during the State of the Union when he said, “to defend the dignity of every person, I am asking the Congress to pass legislation to prohibit the late-term abortion of children, who can feel pain in the mother’s womb. Let us work together to build a culture that cherishes innocent life. And let us reaffirm a fundamental truth: all children – born and unborn – are made in the holy image of God.”
Every single human life is – and ought to be – treated as precious. Unfortunately, many in the Democratic Party not only condone abortion, but further support denying care to babies born alive during a failed abortion. This is tantamount to infanticide, and the mere fact that lawmakers are debating whether or not newborn babies can be denied care demonstrates just how radical the left has become. This chilling disregard for life is nothing short of evil and begs the question of “how did we get here?”
In the wake of the passage of these disturbing and gruesome laws through multiple state legislatures over the past few weeks, we’re proud that our colleague, Congresswoman Ann Wagner (R-MO), has reintroduced the Born Alive Abortion Survivors Protection Act. This important legislation would mandate that doctors provide care for babies born alive during a botched abortion. Representative Wagner poses a simple choice: “either you support babies being killed after they are born or you don’t.” We think that should be pretty easy to answer. The priority of health care providers should always be caring for life. Abandoning newborn children directly violates that fundamental tenet.
While Democrats have consistently blocked our attempts to bring this legislation to the House Floor, we’re glad Republican Whip Steve Scalise has filed a discharge petition for this measure, which requires 218 signatures to force a vote in order to make it clear to the American people which of their elected representatives stand against infanticide and which don’t. This is an issue that should not be controversial or partisan – it’s just the right thing to do.
As leaders of the Values Action Team, which is dedicated to advancing policies of faith, family, and freedom in Congress, we’ve fought nonstop to protect the right to life. The scourge of abortion has plagued our Nation for too many years, but these policies are not who we are. We’re glad to finally work alongside a president who is committed to protecting and cherishing innocent lives. We are optimistic that we are seeing a change of heart nationwide.
Without the right to life, there can be no right to liberty or the pursuit of happiness. Life is a fundamental, basic, and indispensable right gifted to every human being – not from the government, but from God. We stand in strong support of life – at every stage – and we remain committed to protecting the most vulnerable among us.
Congressman Jody Hice is the U.S. Representative for Georgia’s 10th Congressional District and serves as Vice-Chairman of the Values Action Team. He is also a member of the board of the House Freedom Caucus.
Vicky Hartzler represents Missouri’s Fourth Congressional District and has served as Chairwoman of the Values Action Team in the U.S. House of Representatives for the past two years.