Op-Ed

Trent Franks: Do We Really Want the Blood of Innocent Babies on Our Hands?

The United States House of Representatives passed the Born-Alive Abortion Survivors Protection Act in September of 2016, with an overwhelming (71 percent) support (all but five Democrats voting against it).

On Jan. 29, 2018, the United States Senate took a vote on a motion to allow The Pain-Capable Unborn Child Protection Act, which contained within it the same language as the Born-Alive bill, to proceed to the Senate floor for consideration.

This bill would have given those children born alive after surviving an abortion along with preborn children who have come to the very end of the fifth month of gestation (beginning of the sixth month) protection unless the pregnancy was conceived in rape or incest or endangered the life of the mother.

These are children capable of feeling excruciating pain and most of them can now survive if they are born at this age. Almost every other civilized nation on earth protects these children at this age.

The motion-to-proceed on this bill received a bipartisan majority of 51 votes in the U.S. Senate, and the Born Alive language just recently received 53 votes. One would think that a bipartisan majority vote in the U.S. Senate would at least allow such bills to be debated and considered on the floor for a final vote.

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However, unbeknownst to most Americans, this incredibly reasonable, humane legislation, supported by the clear majority of Americans, was stopped cold by the 60-vote motion-to-proceed-to-consider rule from receiving a full debate or even an up or down vote in the Senate, and thus, any hope of passage.

Last year, Majority Leader Mitch McConnell could have used the same procedure to allow a final vote on the Pain-Capable Unborn Child Protection Act that he used to allow Justices Neil Gorsuch and Brett Kavanaugh a vote for confirmation to the U.S. Supreme Court, apart from which, neither would have been confirmed. The bill would clearly then have been debated and passed in the Senate and gone on to President Trump’s certain signature.

If McConnell had done this, thousands of pain-capable human infants, as well as those born alive, would have been protected every year in America by this legislation, and the subsequent court challenges would almost certainly have led to the Supreme Court upholding the constitutionality of protecting the lives of these most innocent members of the human family.  America would then no longer have been one of the few nations on earth to still leave very late-term, pain-capable unborn children completely unprotected.

There was once a time in America when congressional parliamentary rules banned any discussion or debate about the effort to end human slavery. This approach only moved the debate to the battlefields of a Civil War and cost more American blood than any other war in history.

The Democratic Party of the day fought against the efforts of the nascent Republican Party to protect African-Americans from the ravages of slavery with the same rabid fervency that the Democrat Party of today consistently and overwhelmingly works and votes to prevent even the slightest humane protection for these little, pain-capable, pre-born children; and now, breathtakingly, even if they survive abortion and are born alive.

However, since Jan. 29, 2018, it is Republicans who can no longer avoid the fact that the blood of America’s pain-capable, unborn children is also now partially upon our own hands as well.

Republican leadership in the Senate deemed an absurd 60-vote rule (that has now created a modern-day Senate no longer capable of effectively operating under regular order), more important than protecting these thousands of little, pain-capable pre-born and born-alive children of God. Really?

Yes, some Republican senators will deflect by saying they were protecting us from what Democrats gaining the majority might do in the future if the rule is changed. Like what? Something as evil as legalizing the torturous, massacre of innocent, pain-capable pre-born human children in America? Do we actually forget that this is the mind-numbing reality already? Do we really think that a Democratic Party, now working feverishly to pass infanticide bills in New York and other states, will morally hesitate to vanquish the 60-vote rule when they are in full control?!

The present rules and system ensure that the pursuit of federal protection for innocent preborn children could continue indefinitely without resolution.

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In the meantime, pro-life groups will continue to beseech America to open her eyes, including those few pro-life groups who secretly support the 60-vote rule in the Senate that precludes any plausible possibility that their stated goal of gaining federal legal protection for preborn human beings can be achieved in the foreseeable future.

Republican leadership will go on allowing Democrats to use the same leverage of the 60-vote rule in the Senate to force pro-life Republicans in both Houses (trying to prevent the government from shutting down) to cast an anguished vote year after year to give millions of taxpayer dollars to the “Abortion Corporation,” Planned Parenthood, who will then continue to freely prosecute its relentless mass genocide against these so helpless.

Many Republican senators will also go on being re-elected by beating their chest proclaiming their pro-life credentials when they quietly supported the rule that left thousands of pain-capable pre-born and born-alive babies in America condemned to a merciless death at the whim of the abortionist year after year.

If Republicans can find the clarity and the courage to admit only one thing to ourselves, we should admit that it didn’t have to be this way. It was once undeniably within our power to change it when we were still in the majority.

Both parties should open their eyes and hearts and remember that protecting pain-capable pre-born children and born alive survivors of abortion is not a Republican issue, or a Democrat issue — it is a test of our basic humanity and who we are as a human family.

For God’s sake, staining America’s very foundations with the blood of our own helpless children is not who we truly are.

Each Republican senator must now ask himself or herself, is there any Senate rule or Republican principle more important than securing the very right to live of those most innocent and defenseless among us?

Each Democrat senator must ask himself or herself, is voting against, or filibustering against, a bill to protect born alive human babies from agonizing dismemberment and death, in the land of the free and the home of the brave, who I am and will be remembered for, as a United States senator?

And all of us, as Americans, must ask ourselves, is there any more foundational American principle than the core, self-evident truth that all of us are children of God?

Our response as a people and a nation to this unconscionable injustice is vital to everything our founding fathers lived to give us and to everything those lying out in Arlington National Cemetery died to save.

The following video is a pro-life ad produced in 2016 by Trent Franks through the Family Policy Alliance:

The views expressed in this opinion article are those of their author and are not necessarily either shared or endorsed by the owners of this website. If you are interested in contributing an Op-Ed to The Western Journal, you can learn about our submission guidelines and process here.

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Trent Franks represented Arizona's 8th Congressional District in Congress and served in the Arizona House of Representatives. He was the author and leading proponent of the original tax-credit scholarship bill in Arizona.




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