More Partial-Birth Abortion Information
The following updated statement was issued by the National Right to Life
Committee (NRLC) in Washington on Thursday, November 6, 2003, at 7:30
p.m. ET. For further information, visit the NRLC website (www.nrlc.org),
send e-mail to Legfederal@aol.com, or call 202-626-8833.
NATIONAL RIGHT TO LIFE COMMENTS ON COURT ORDERS AND PRESIDENT BUSH'S
STATEMENT; ISSUES MEMO DISTILLING AND
LINKING KEY DOCUMENTATION ON DISPUTED ISSUES REGARDING PARTIAL-BIRTH
WASHINGTON (Nov. 6, 2003) -- On November 6, federal judges in New York and
California issued temporary restraining orders that will severely impede
enforcement of the Partial-Birth Abortion Ban Act for the time being.
Earlier, on November 5, a federal district judge in Nebraska issued an order
that prevented enforcement against four specific abortionists.
"Partly born, premature infants will continue to die at the point of
seven-inch scissors, because of these judicial orders," NRLC Legislative
Director Douglas Johnson commented. "But we believe that this law will
ultimately be reviewed by the Supreme Court, where five justices in 2000
said Roe v. Wade guarantees the right to perform partial-birth abortions at
will. We can only hope that by the time this law reaches the Supreme Court,
there will be at least a one-vote shift away from that extreme and inhumane
NRLC, the nation's major pro-life organization, has strongly commended
President Bush for signing the bill into law. NRLC took note of the
President's statement just before he signed the bill: "For years, a
terrible form of violence has been directed against children who are inches
from birth, while the law looked the other way."
"President Bush's statement that a partial-birth abortion kills a baby who
is 'inches from birth' is the literal, painful truth," Johnson said. "Most
partial-birth abortions are performed in the fifth and sixth months --
stages at which most babies, if expelled by premature labor, are live
births. This abortion method is, literally, a partial birth."
In a partial-birth abortion, usually performed in the fifth and sixth
months, a living premature baby is mostly delivered, feet first, until only
the head remains in the womb, after which the abortionist punctures the
skull and removes the brain with a suction machine. The abortion industry
has acknowledged that the method is performed thousands of times annually,
and in the "vast majority" of cases, on healthy babies of healthy mothers.
President Bush's complete remarks at the signing ceremony are posted here:
On November 5, NRLC released a memorandum containing specific information
addressing the major disputed issues regarding partial-birth abortion,
including the language and the effect of the bill; why "partial-birth
abortion" is not synonymous with various pseudo-medical jargon terms used by
the law's opponents, or with the nebulous label "late-term abortion"; how
the term "partial-birth" conforms to the structure of current laws governing
what constitutes a legal "live birth"; documentation that the National
Coalition of Abortion Providers has conceded that "in the vast majority of
cases, the procedure is performed on a healthy mother with a healthy fetus
that is 20 weeks or more along"; and how medically documented illustrations
of two different abortion methods can allow the public to better evaluate
the claims and counterclaims on what the bill actually covers and does not
cover. On each point, the memo contains links to key documents, including
reports of investigative journalists and interviews with abortionists.
The memo also addresses the question of what's next on the agenda for the
pro-life movement in Congress.
The memo, "The
Partial-Birth Abortion Ban Act: Misconceptions and Realities," is
posted on the NRLC website here:
NRLC's archive of documentation on partial-birth abortion -- the most
extensive on the Internet -- is at: