Rounds Supports Bill to Protect Newborns Who Survive Abortions
Rounds on Senate floor: “All life is sacred and has value. We must seek to protect and save lives whenever possible, however possible.”
WASHINGTON—U.S. Sen. Mike Rounds (R-S.D.) today delivered a speech on the Senate floor about the dignity of all human life prior to the Senate vote on the Born Alive Abortion Survivors Protection Act. Rounds is an original cosponsor of the legislation, which was introduced by Sen. Ben Sasse (R-Neb.). It failed to advance in the Senate today.
“In the history of the world, the true test of a society is how well we treat the most vulnerable among us,” said Rounds in his speech. “A baby who survives an abortion deserves the same rights under the law as any other newborn baby and should receive proper medical care, not be left to die – or killed… All life is sacred and has value. We must seek to protect and save lives whenever possible, however possible.”
Rounds’ remarks, as prepared for delivery:
Mr. President, I rise today to discuss an issue of vital importance to our society: the intrinsic value of human life.
Later today, every senator will have an opportunity to stand up for human dignity and condemn infanticide when we vote on the Born Alive Abortion Survivors Protection Act.
This shouldn’t be a difficult vote for any one of us.
I believe in the value of every innocent human life, beginning at the moment of conception to natural death.
Life is a gift from God that should be respected and treated with dignity, from the very beginning to the very end.
I’ve worked to enact pro-life policies throughout my time in public service based upon this principle.
While working as governor, I signed legislation to ban abortions in South Dakota, except when necessary to save a mother’s life.
Humanae Vitae, written by Pope Paul IV and later expanded upon in Evangelium Vitae written by Saint Pope John Paul II the Great, teaches that there can be no true democracy without a recognition of the dignity of every person.
It goes on to teach that respect and dignity must be given to each human life for true peace and freedom to exist.
We must demand respect for the rights of all.
This includes those in the womb, as well as mothers carrying a child who are facing difficult challenges – both deserve our utmost compassion and care.
While this should be common sense to everyone, we recognize that in this country there are individuals who are pro-life, and individuals who are pro-choice.
While I and millions of other pro-life Americans continue to work to end all abortions and support measures that strengthen the dignity of life, recent actions at the state level have been deeply troubling.
Pro-choice individuals are actually now supporting measures that would allow doctors to commit infanticide even after a baby has been born alive.
For example, last month the state of New York repealed section 4164 of the state’s public health law which provided protections for an infant born alive after a failed abortion.
Subsequently, in Virginia legislation has been introduced that would legalize abortion up to term and even after the birth has begun.
In Rhode Island, the governor has vowed to sign legislation legalizing abortion even after the child is viable.
These examples of abortion extremism at its worst – radical, abhorrent acts of infanticide – should horrify all of us.
While I’m troubled by the thought of any baby being killed at any stage, at a bare minimum, every one of us should be able to agree that infanticide, or the killing of a baby after it has been born alive, is unacceptable.
This is a separate issue from abortion, which is abhorrent in itself.
In the history of the world, the true test of a society is how well we treat the most vulnerable among us.
That is why we must pass this legislation, the Born-Alive Abortion Survivors Protection Act, of which I am an original cosponsor.
I would like to thank Senator Sasse for bringing this legislation forward.
The Born Alive Abortion Survivors Protection Act simply protects newborns who survive abortions by requiring appropriate care and admission to a hospital.
When a failed abortion results in the live birth of an infant, our legislation makes clear that health care providers must exercise the same degree of professional skill to protect the newborn child, as would be offered to any other child born alive at the same gestational age.
A baby who survives an abortion deserves the same rights under the law as any other newborn baby and should receive proper medical care, not be left to die – or killed.
It is also worth mentioning that President Trump stood up for life during his State of the Union address earlier this month, calling on Congress to pass legislation to prohibit late-term abortions of children who feel pain in the mother’s womb.
President Trump urged: “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.”
I couldn’t agree more.
All life is sacred and has value.
We must seek to protect and save lives whenever possible, however possible.
I urge my colleagues to support the Born Alive Abortion Survivors Protection Act.
Thank you, Mr. President, I yield the floor.