Brownback Signs Pain-Capable Unborn Child Protection Act


Kansas becomes second state to enact NRLC model legislation

WASHINGTON – At a signing ceremony in Topeka this afternoon, Kansas Governor Sam Brownback signed the Pain-Capable Unborn Child Protection Act into law.  Sponsored by state Rep. Lance Kinzer, the law passed the Kansas House of Representatives 91-30, in February.  The state Senate granted approval, 24-15, in late March.  The law, modeled after National Right to Life Committee (NRLC) draft language enacted by the Nebraska legislature last year, was a legislative priority for Kansans for Life, NRLC’s state affiliate.

 “Modern medical science provides substantial evidence that unborn children recoil from painful stimuli, that their stress hormones increase, and that they require anesthesia for fetal surgery,” said Mary Spaulding Balch, J.D., NRLC director of state legislation.  “Therefore, the states have a compelling interest in protecting unborn children who are capable of feeling pain from abortion. Kansas is the second state to recognize this obligation by enacting the Pain-Capable Unborn Child Protection Act, but we expect Idaho and Oklahoma to follow within days – and other state legislatures will be voting on similar bills this year.”

Originally drafted by NRLC’s state legislation department, the model Pain-Capable Unborn Child Protection Act protects unborn children who are capable of feeling pain from abortion except when the mother “has a condition which so complicates her medical condition as to necessitate the abortion of her pregnancy to avert death or to avert serious risk of substantial or irreversible physical impairment of a major bodily function or…it is necessary to preserve the life of an unborn child.” 

 Further documentation and links to the scientific studies can be found at: www.doctorsonfetalpain.com.

 Kansas becomes the second state to make the Pain-Capable Unborn Child Protection Act law.  Idaho and Oklahoma have also passed the law this spring and the measures are currently awaiting signatures by governors in both states.  The legislation has also been introduced in Alabama (where it has already passed the state House of Representatives), Minnesota and Oregon.

 The Kansas law can be found here:

http://kslegislature.org/li/b2011_12/year1/measures/documents/hb2218_enrolled.pdf

 “Rep. Kinzer and Gov. Brownback are to be commended for their efforts to protect unborn children and help their mothers with enactment of the Pain-Capable Unborn Child Protection Act,” added Alan Hansen, O.D., president of the Kansans for Life Board of Directors.

 The National Right to Life Committee (NRLC), the federation of 50 state right-to-life organizations and more than 3,000 local chapters nationwide, is the nation’s largest pro-life group. National Right to Life works through legislation and education to protect those threatened by abortion, infanticide, euthanasia and assisted suicide.