Supreme Court Considers Partial-Birth Abortion Ban Act of 2003
Continuing Need For Conservative Judges
By California Yankee Posted in Law — Comments (5) / Email this page » / Leave a comment »
Today the Supreme Court will hear two hours of arguments as it considers the constitutionality of the Partial-Birth Abortion Ban Act of 2003.
The Partial-Birth Abortion Ban, passed after years of emotional debate, has never been enforced because of court challenges. Three lawsuits were brought challenging the law before it was even signed by President Bush. Those three challenges resulted in six federal court decisions that found the law to be unconstitutional.
Let's be clear what the Supreme Court is considering. The Partial-Birth Abortion Ban Act of 2003 only prohibits a horrific procedure, generally performed in the second or third trimester, in which a fetus is partially removed from the womb, and its skull is punctured or crushed.
The Partial-Birth Abortion Ban Act of 2003, defines partial birth abortion:
Sec. 1531. Partial-birth abortions prohibited
1.(b) As used in this section--
(1) the term `partial-birth abortion' means an abortion in which the person performing the abortion--
(A) deliberately and intentionally vaginally delivers a living fetus until, in the case of a head-first presentation, the entire fetal head is outside the body of the mother, or, in the case of breech presentation, any part of the fetal trunk past the navel is outside the body of the mother, for the purpose of performing an overt act that the person knows will kill the partially delivered living fetus; and
(B) performs the overt act, other than completion of delivery, that kills the partially delivered living fetus.
Congress provided that this ban would not apply to a situation in which the mother would be put at risk:
This subsection does not apply to a partial-birth abortion that is necessary to save the life of a mother whose life is endangered by a physical disorder, physical illness, or physical injury, including a life-endangering physical condition caused by or arising from the pregnancy itself.
Opponents fighting this law have been careful, from the moment the partial-birth abortion ban was enacted, to never refer to the disgusting procedure as "partial-birth abortion." Instead they have tried to sanitize the debate using code words, such as dilation and extraction or an intact dilation and evacuation. Changing the vocabulary to use antiseptic terms doesn't change the reality that partial-birth abortions are gruesome late-term procedures, which at best resemble infanticide.
I don't see how anyone can support this abhorrent procedure.
Even after the Democrats election there remain the conservative issues and values we continue to uphold. Partial-birth abortion is only the most topical issue to remind us of the continuing to struggle for good judges.
The outcome in the Supreme Court will likely depend upon Roberts and Alito appointed by President Bush. The court split 5-4 in 2000 in striking down a Nebraska law, barring partial-birth abortion.