Abortion

Republican Senator Graham Introduces Bill to Ban Abortions After 20 Weeks

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War on Women
Seekingdivinity: Dreamstime

Some Republican politicians evidently believe that fighting the Culture War is a winning electoral strategy. Consequently, Sen. Lindsey Graham (R-S.C.) is introducing a bill with co-sponsors Sens. Roy Blunt (R-Mo.) and Chuck Grassley (R-Iowa) that would ban abortions after 20 weeks of pregnancy. From Politico:

A recent Quinnipiac poll found 55 percent of voters support the 20-week limit, one of a slew of polls that have Republicans betting that late-term abortion will unite the GOP in ways other issues don't.

Of course, it's not about elections.

Graham said in an interview that the legislation is less about politics, more about conscience.

"The government has a legitimate interest in protecting the unborn child over the 20-week period because they are capable of feeling pain and the scientific evidence is overwhelming," Graham said. "When you do surgery on a 20-week baby, you provide anesthesia because of pain."

Back in July, I delved into the scientific question of "Do Fetuses Feel Pain?" It turns out that most of the medical groups that have considered the issue have concluded that it is highly unlikely that fetuses can have a conscious experience of pain before the third trimester of development. For example, I noted a study by the United Kingdom's Royal College of Obstetricians and Gynaecologists (RCOG) on the topic: 

The RCOG's report, Fetal Awareness: A Review of Research and Recommendations for Practice was issued in March 2010. "In reviewing the neuroanatomical and physiological evidence in the fetus," it found, "it was apparent that connections from the periphery [of the fetal body] to the cortex are not intact before 24 weeks of gestation and, as most neuroscientists believe that the cortex is necessary for pain perception, it can be concluded that the fetus cannot experience pain in any sense prior to this gestation." In other words, while fetuses can react to pain, at the 24-week stage of brain development there is no subject present that is capable of experiencing pain.

The RCOG report also found that even after 24 weeks of development, fetuses abide "in a continuous sleep-like unconsciousness or sedation" that "can suppress higher cortical activation in the presence of intrusive external stimuli." Since fetuses cannot experience pain before 24 weeks, the RCOG recommends against administering pain-relieving drugs when treating fetuses in the womb except in cases when it's necessary to immobilize them.

In other words, the senators are justifiying their legislation using statements that are very likely to be scienifically wrong.

In any case, what percentage of abortions occur after 20 weeks now? As I reported:

The latest report from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention says that in 2009, 64 percent of abortions were performed before 8 weeks' gestation, and 91.7 percent before 13 weeks. Seven percent were performed between 14 and 20 weeks, and just 1.3 percent after 21 weeks. Out of 784,000 abortions, just over 10,000 were performed after 21 weeks' gestation. There are not good data on why some women wait until after 21 weeks before choosing abortion, but two likely reasons come to mind: a prenatal discovery of significant fetal abnormalities, and embarrassed adolescent denial.

Naturally, proponents of a woman's right to choose are pushing back. I received an emailed statement from Nita Chaudhary, co-founder of UltraViolet, a national women's advocacy organization declaring:

"When politicians introduce these inhumane bans on abortions, they are tying the hands of doctors who want to help couples going through heartbreaking situations like serious fetal anomalies. Less than 2% of abortions occur after 20 weeks, and many of them are wanted pregnancies that are just too dangerous or unhealthy to continue. Sen. Graham's bill criminalizing women's reproductive choices after 20 weeks does not make women or our families safer or healthier. We urge members of the Senate to reject this extreme bill and stand up for the rights of American women."

The Politico article concludes:

Democrats are more than willing to have the debate, seeing the issue as an electoral loser for Republicans.

Even if the polls now show 55 percent support for banning abortion after 20 weeks, I have every confidence that tone-deaf and ham-fisted rhetoric by Republican pols in Congress will soon turn this around.

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  1. It’s good to know Republicans are in keeping with smaller, less intrusive government, and have finally given up on Kultur Var issues.

    1. Or, you know, it’s good to see that the Republicans with all of their faults are still trying to defend the personhood of those who are unable to do so on their own.

      1. Then why 20 weeks? That’s almost certain not to pass, so why not just propose a total ban?

        1. Re: Zeb,

          Then why 20 weeks? That’s almost certain not to pass, so why not just propose a total ban?

          One thing at a time, Zeb. Remember the 3/5 compromise? It wasn’t because the framers really thought blacks were only 3/5ths human.

        2. Then why 20 weeks? That’s almost certain not to pass, so why not just propose a total ban?

          It would have to be a Constitutional amendment to be a total ban. Otherwise, the first district court to get a case would nuke it using Roe v. Wade as justification.

        3. Well, just like Democrats don’t want to outlaw ALL guns, just specific bad guns. I see the logic.

          1. How many kids do you have (not counting the ones you killed)?

      2. Or, you know, it’s good to see that the Republicans with all of their faults are still trying to defend the personhood of those who are unable to do so on their own.

        Maybe start with those of us that are already here.

  2. The stupid party just can’t stop with the KULTUR WAR stupidity. This is handing a TEAM OUTRAGE issue to TEAM BLUE. It’s like a fucking gift, and this moron is just giving it to him. If I were more paranoid I’d assume they were actually in cahoots, it’s so stupid.

    1. TEAM RED never fails to amaze me at the level of dumbness that they can achieve.

      By the way, in before the epic 1000 comment abortion argument commences here.

    2. No shit. I read the headline, and was wondering if the strap-title should be =

      “:part of grand strategy to remind voting public why they hate Republicans”

      Seriously, what could be more retarded than this in the current context? NOTHING. Well, maybe some terry shiavo type shit.

      1. And what does it gain him? A sop to some socons? Yet it’s like giving crack to the TEAM BLUE base. They will go insane over this.

        1. I honestly wonder if he’s trying to torpedo Rand Paul on this, by forcing him to vote one way or the other.

          1. It’s so stupid that this is plausible.

          2. That can be the only purpose of this otheriwse utterly politically retarded move.

          3. I guess LG is guarding his right flank from some pro-life Palin-like nut. And I’ll bet he fails.

        2. I thought we were acting like crack is not all that bad here now (as long as it is not being violated by doctors on a police hunch, that is)

          1. Not as bad as the fear-mongers would have you believe doesn’t necessarily mean “not that bad”. Though you apparently smoke crack occasionally and get blackout drunk regularly and still be mayor of Toronto, so maybe it isn’t so bad.

        3. Making the Blue base insane, when they would never vote R anyway, doesn’t sound too horrible. I mean, they’re not too far removed from insanity anyway. If Mr. and Mrs. Middle America seeing the Dem base go of the deep end over protecting 5 month old babies, maybe they’ll decide that the Dem base is sort of…crazy.

        4. And what does it gain him? A sop to some socons?

          The republican base in South Carolina hates his guts and is trying to figure which of his 8 primary challengers they coalesce around.

          So, this is a blatant strategy on his part for the fundie vote.

      2. Seriously, what could be more retarded than this in the current context?

        The Employment Non-Discrimination Act?

        1. “What the GOP really needs to do is remind people they hate gays and women. Also, something about black people”

          /DNC strategist

          1. Although, it did work, I think.

            Idiot FB post:

            How can members of our political system still be willing to vote FOR discrimination? The senate vote should have been 100-0 and if the house doesn’t pass it…. I dont know what to say.

  3. Abortion, abortion, abortion, abortion. Abortion.

    1. A borscht ton?

    2. You should have aborted that comment, preferably before the 20th character.

  4. Aaaaannnnnnd here we go AGAIAAAIIIINNNN!!!!!

  5. “Even if the polls now show 55 percent support for” x, “I have every confidence that tone-deaf and ham-fisted rhetoric by Republican pols in Congress will soon turn this around.”

    Replace the word Republican with Libertarian, and you’ll see why this is a false basis for arguing against something.

    1. There are Libertarian Politicians in Congress?

      News to me.

      Oh yeah you might want to pay more attention, Ron was not commenting on the rightness or wrongness of the bill itself but rather how smart of a decision pursuing this particular course of action which has exactly 0 chance of passing into law BEFORE an election in which they could conceivably gain control of both houses of congress, possibly with enough of a margin that they could actually build a veto proof majority with the aid of a few Democrats from heavily catholic states.

      1. My fault. I read that wrong.

  6. Dear Senator Graham, here’s some advice you should listen to.

    PS: You are an idiot.

    1. “To play better tennis, hit the ball over the net!”

      WHAAAAAAAA???

      1. “So that’s what I’ve been doing wrong!”

        1. Also, more of the blonde, please.

        2. Tip #2 = Stop Throwing the Racquet At the Other Player!

    2. I was watching blondie and taking special note of her legs. What was the video about? I missed it.

      1. You should probably go watch some footage of Maria Sharapova, Maria Kirilenko, and Ana Ivanovic then.

        1. Ivanovi? isn’t a blonde.

          And I think Dominika Cibulkov? is better-looking anyhow. She’s only like 5’4″, but she looks like she’d be a dynamo in the sack.

          1. They’re all screamers for sure.

            1. Doooodz!

              Caroline Wozniacki for the win!

              Rory Mc knew what he was doing.

              Kevin R

  7. “A recent Quinnipiac poll found 55 percent of voters support the 20-week limit…”

    And a recent Gallup poll found 58 percent of voters support the legalization of marijuana. I’m sure Lindsey will be intrudicing a legalization bill any minute…..

  8. 784,000 sounds like an awful lot of abortions.

    I.wonder how.many open-heart surgeries are performed annually?

  9. HAHAHAHAHAHAHAHA!!! What a bunch of dumb fucks!

    It could have been week after week of journalists spitting in Obama’s chili over Obamacare and now Graham gives them the PEEEERRRFECT opportunity to cease fire.

    1. Graham is craven and awful but he is not dumb. He is sold out his supporters on every single issue, except abortion. So he is going to try to make that an issue so they forget the rest.

      Sure it is a long shot. But it is all he has left.

  10. Graham has spent his entire career telling the GOP base to go fuck themselves on nearly everything. Now that they are finally going to primary his sorry ass next year, he pulls out the “but I care about abortion” card.

    Every big government crap weasel on both sides love the culture war. They love it because it keeps the voters divided and thus prevents them from uniting and holding their worthless asses responsible for looting the country. Here we see the Republican example of this where an establishment crook Graham tries to placate his base by starting an argument over abortion. Of course the establishment crooks on the other side will happily play along because they also don’t want their supporters thinking about anything but the culture war.

    1. Every big government crap weasel on both sides love the culture war. They love it because it keeps the voters divided and thus prevents them from uniting and holding their worthless asses responsible for looting the country.

      Amen. Keep talking about things like completely violating the 2ND Amendment, or Stand-your-ground, or abortion, or anything that is highly volatile, yet extremely stable and unlikely to change – all so they stop paying attention to what else is going on.

      Which would be hilarious to watch – if it weren’t so effective.

  11. Of course, it’s not about elections.

    Graham said in an interview that the legislation is less about politics, more about conscience.

    Oh of course not. Why else would a Republican senator from a very red state who’s pretty unpopular with his base and up for reelection next year introduce a bill that could galvanize the opposition? Not his problem, Lindsey’s gotta put Lindsey first.

  12. I hold my nose every damn time I vote R. I’m going to have to start holding my pores.

  13. Well, perhaps I’ll be crucified for this, but one of the few issues I recognize as being within the legitimate realm of government affairs is the protection of life. I see it as an extension of the right to self ownership. I do think life begins in the womb. Ok, shoot away.

    1. You are right. And 20 weeks is pretty close to the mark when you can no longer deny that life has begun.

      But, Graham is a total crap weasel who is introducing a bill that he knows will never pass, change the topic from things that are killing the Dems right now, all because he is worried about the voters of South Carolina finally kicking his worthless ass out of office and thinks this might get them to reconsider.

      When you realize all of that, the merits of the bill stop mattering.

    2. Can we deal with the problems outside the womb FIRST, please?

    3. No, you’re right. If a person considers a baby in the womb at 20 weeks to be a person, they are deserving of the protection of law. People here can squawk all they want about culture war, but this isn’t a culture thing, or wouldn’t be, if the left weren’t spending so much effort trying to make it one.

      1. which person? 50%+1? That person?

        1. Even though that pretend confusion has nothing to do with the point, it does sort of lead to why I’m not the type to push for abortion restrictions. I don’t trust the government to not screw up enforcement. I’m not comfortable with forcing people who think life begins at birth, to adapt my view at the end of the government gun.

          1. Well, I think we’re really close, if not technologically possible now, to tell when a fetus becomes human with some test, such as brain activity and ability to survive (with medical help) outside womb (assume a fair chance at survival too).

            I do agree with your point on enforcement though – do you jail heavy drinkers and drug users? What if she pays someone to kick her really hard?

            But at some point – we should be able to come to a real time frame from a scientific point of view – then the issue becomes less about life at conception views and more about “so abortion at any time or nothing?”.

      2. No one to this point in the threat at least has commented on the bill itself, the commentary has been entirely dedicated to the absolutely abysmal stupidity of the timing.

        With Democratic control of the Senate and White House this bill has 0 chance of ever making it into law so the act is purely symbolic. However the timing cannot be worse. Abortion is a looser issue for Republicans on a national scale because it wins them no votes (virtually all hardcore pro life people already vote Republican) but costs them moderate independant votes and inflames the passions of the opposition driving their turnout through the roof. Further, right now Democrats are getting killed over self inflicted wounds.

        Id the Republicans could have just shut their mouths about all culture war issues for the next year their odds of regaining control of both houses would have been very good and they stood an outside chance at getting both houses and the Presidency in 2016 at which time they could have proposed this bill and it would have at least had an outside chance of passing.

        In otherwords proposing this bill now and not in 3 years is directly counterproductive to the goal of restricting abortions because it will increase the size of the Democrat vote in the next 2 elections

    4. I’m not going to argue with you because it is pointless and has all been said before. But I’d just like to point out that the disagreement has nothing to do with when life begins. Obviously, a fertilized egg is the beginning of the life of a genetically distinct organism. The relevant questions are when does that life attain the moral status of a human being and what obligation does the host of that organism have to keep it alive.

      The big (and interesting) question isn’t about life, but what makes something fully human in a moral sense.

      1. ^This.

        I like to point out these things:

        Sentience is not sapience.

        Sentience is why we don’t needlessly drown puppies.

        Sapience is why we keep ax-murdering child rapists alive.

        So, fetuses could be unfeeling sapients or unthinking sentients, in which case, killing is bad, m’kay?

        Not convinced, mind you, just sayin’.

        As for the polls, salience is what is important. A majority could be for outlawing the designated hitter: doesn’t mean they would vote on that issue.

        Kevin R

        1. Also good points.

          The whole abortion issue is actually a very interesting subject if everyone is willing to argue in good faith.

    5. How long should the sentences be for the doctor and the 17-year old girl?

  14. Maybe Graham should ask Governor Cuccinelli what he thinks.

  15. I do not care for Lindsey at all, but arguments about the terms of the legality of abortion are more than just “culture war”. Merely placing said label as a means of dismissal does not change anything– it merely dodges honest discussion.

    Since we live in a representative democracy(we must elect our technocratic betters to represent us), it is true a person may push a popular idea with no intention to implement it, and through that gain popularity where they would not. If that is what you all mean, then I agree that republicans should not forget how horrible Lindsey is for the mere hope of getting one thing they think is very important.

  16. Perhaps we can take this in a slightly different direction to avoid rehashing the same arguments about abortion.

    I’ve never understood the assertion that pain is something that requires some sort of conscious awareness to process. I’m not familiar with the research done in this area, but at first glance it just doesn’t pass the smell test. No doubt there is a psychological trauma that comes with pain, but there is also a clear physiological effect too, no? Maybe experts in the field would rather use another word besides pain — discomfort? But there is something there. If I stab an earthworm with a pin it squirms to get away. The earthworm is clearly experiencing something and clearly is trying to stop that experience from continuing. Whether or not that experience rises to the formal definition of “pain”, whatever that is, doesn’t seem important to me when considering the concept of suffering.

    1. Let’s not use pain. I know that’s what people say, but what they are really fighting about is viability. At what point is the spontaneous labor and an abortion going to result in highly different death rates? Right now, 23-24 weeks is kind of the point where there is going to be a concerted effort to save the baby. Earlier than that and they get lucky, but they aren’t going to take extreme measures.

      This would be akin to redefining personhood in much the way that we consider a newborn a person but older cultures would have waited 2 weeks for the baby to be declared a person.

      The pain thing is an obvious misdirection by both sides, as there are several children every year born without the ability to feel pain and they are considered people by the law.

      1. I don’t even think viability is really the issue. I see it as an entirely philosophical question. What is it that gives a human being the moral status that makes killing it murder?

        Science won’t answer it because biologically speaking every organism is just a clump of cells.

  17. Perhaps we can take this in a slightly different direction to avoid rehashing the same arguments about abortion.

    I’ve never understood the assertion that pain is something that requires some sort of conscious awareness to process. I’m not familiar with the research done in this area, but at first glance it just doesn’t pass the smell test. No doubt there is a psychological trauma that comes with pain, but there is also a clear physiological effect too, no? Maybe experts in the field would rather use another word besides pain — discomfort? But there is something there. If I stab an earthworm with a pin it squirms to get away. The earthworm is clearly experiencing something and clearly is trying to stop that experience from continuing. Whether or not that experience rises to the formal definition of “pain”, whatever that is, doesn’t seem important to me when considering the concept of suffering.

    1. Re: LynchPin1477,

      Whether or not that experience rises to the formal definition of “pain”, whatever that is, doesn’t seem important to me when considering the concept of suffering.

      The usual justification for dismissing the notion of personhood for a human fetus is that a fetus is not (take your pick) viable, thinking, capable of feeling pain, etc.

      All are non sequiturs, as personhood is not grated to a human because that human complies with a comprehensive list of prerequisites but because *I* as a human cannot remove personhood from another human. *I* don’t have that right – PERIOD.

      In a nutshell, abortion is nothing more than yet another manifestation of positive rights which are antitethical to natural rights and the Non Aggression Principle.

      1. If your kid goes braindead, do you have control over whether that child is artificially kept alive?

  18. The weird thing is, if this were to pass, it shoots down all but the most extreme positions on the issue and takes them off the table.

    20 weeks is right at the extreme limit of viability, its hard to argue that a viable fetus hasnt achieved personhood.

    Its a line that is neither “too early” nor “too late”. It is almost the perfect compromise position that makes the most people reasonably happy while pissing off only small numbers on each side.

    It isnt where I would draw the line but it really would make this issue a non-issue.

    That said, its a state, not a federal, issue. Defining murder/assault/etc isnt a federal thing.

    1. But isn’t defining “life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness”?

      I think defining personhood IS a federal thing.

    2. As Ron Paul said – and he’s a big federalist – so long as abortion is in the federal arena, which it is, the federal policy may as well affirm rather than deny the value of human life.

      1. Does Rand have a daughter? Does he believe that a rape baby is a “gift from God”?

        1. Ah, Nixonfan, are you aware of what your idol said about abortion?

          “There are times when an abortion is necessary. I know that. When you have a black and a white,” he told an aide, before adding: “Or a rape.””

          http://www.huffingtonpost.com/…..19746.html

    3. You can argue the principled merits of such a position all day long, but Graham, Grassley, and Blunt don’t have a principle between them.

  19. It’s kind of funny to hear Libertarians mock Republicans for putting principles above politics.

    Graham may be doing this for politics but there are plenty of people for who this is an issue of principle.

    1. Doesn’t matter, the timing makes it the wrong thing to do.

      If you honestly believe abortion is murder and want to restrict it as much as possible then you must admit that proposing this bill at a time when it cannot be passed into law because Democrats control the house and Senate yet will cause significant damage to Republican efforts to change that fact is the wrong thing to do.

      You remember that old prayer ‘God grant me the serenity to accept the things I cannot change…”

      Right now, today you cannot get a law banning abortion passed. What you could do is stop talking about abortion while working to get Republican control over all of Washington and then attempt to pass the law.

      Clearly Graham lacks the wisdom to know the difference

      1. “Clearly Graham lacks the wisdom to know the difference”

        You assume he has the goal of passing this bill. He’s just trying to not get primaried.

      2. Graham could attach the abortion bill to his vote on the next CR.

        Pass this or I wont waffle again!

        If he is truly principled on this issue, that is what he will do.

      3. I agree that it is not going to pass.

        I just find it funny that a bunch of Libertarians of all people are criticizing someone for advocating a politically unpopular position.

    2. Sooo… maybe one of them could sponsor the bill and not the three biggest weathervanes in the Senate?

      1. I agree that would be better.

  20. Did Lindsey happen to identify which clause in the Constitution grants such power to the Federal Government?

    While I despise the idea of third trimester elective abortions, I do not see where our federal government has any authority over the matter.

    1. If you go from the assumption that life begins at 20 weeks, the Feds certainly have the power because they are doing nothing here but enforcing the federal right of due process.

      Imagine if some states made it legal to murder a certain class of citizen. The feds certainly would have the power to step in because those citizens have a federal right to due process which the state is ignoring and thus the feds have the power to ensure is enforced.

      1. I think its a bit of a stretch on the due process claim. Not for the current way the Supremes have stretched the constitution, but for the way I want it handled. It fits right in with what the SC has done with other clauses.

        1. I think the Congress has the power to pass laws to enforce federally protected rights.

  21. Lindsey Graham is a mendacious shithead of the highest order, but if this somehow passes, I’ll take back all the awful things I have said about him…for a few weeks at least.

    Sorry, but I fail to see how further protecting the personhood of viable innocents can ever be considered a bad thing. In fact, I don’t think this bill goes far enough.*

    *I am not trying to start a train wreck of an abortion thread and I think everybody here knows my position on this.

    1. blah blah blah. Something ’bout Jesus. blah blah blah

      1. Yeah, what does sloop know about babies?

      2. And of course no one on here ever makes such an argument. But don’t let that stop you from thinking they do.

        1. Adjust your sarcasometer

    2. We don’t really have many of those. There are only a few “life doesn’t begin until the trip down the magic birth canal” types on here. I think most people on here agree that life begins at viability. And most of the ones who don’t understand that you can take a different view and still be libertarian.

      There isn’t a lot of “being libertarian means the right to chose” sort of nonsense on here.

    3. for a few weeks at least

      Haha, I don’t believe you could hold off on hating Graham for more than several hours, maybe 36, tops.

    4. It’s not going to pass. He’s not even going to try. It’s just for show because he has primary opponents.

    5. I understand your position on this issue, and respect it. But Graham is completely disingenuous here, and I think he knows that to propose this bill at this time will actually set back the pro-life position, but is using it to beat back a primary challenge.

      You’re mistake is in entertaining the possibility that this will pass. It won’t even pass the Senate, much less the House, and there’s no chance of Obama signing it. This is purely a cynical ploy by Graham to save his seat, and he deserves only scorn and contempt for it regardless of your position on abortion.

      1. Brain fart. Of course it has a strong possibility of passing the House, but the rest of my post stands.

  22. What your baby looks like – 20 weeks:

    http://www.babycenter.com/feta…..s-20-weeks

    1. There have been a couple of 21 week olds born and have survived.

      20 weeks is right at the edge of viability under current technology. Which means it will be at 16 weeks in a decade or so.

  23. Ron,

    OK, assuming fetuses don’t feel pain until 24 weeks – and assuming further that pain is the relevant consideration – would you support a ban on abortion after 24 weeks rather than 20? Because it sounds silly to flip out over an abortion bill where you only have 1 months’ worth of disagreement with the sponsor.

  24. I love how the choicers are flipping out – “this is an extremist bill! Anyway, it only affects under 2% of abortions!” Choose a story and stick to it, guys.

    1. What would be your sentencing guidelines for the doctor and the 17-year old girl?

      1. Let’s see, IIRC this is a companion bill to a house measure which passed in June (HR 1797), and the provision on sentencing says:

        “`(c) Criminal Penalty- Whoever violates subsection (a) shall be fined under this title or imprisoned for not more than 5 years, or both.

        “`(d) Bar to Prosecution- A woman upon whom an abortion in violation of subsection (a) is performed or attempted may not be prosecuted under, or for a conspiracy to violate, subsection (a), or for an offense under section 2, 3, or 4 of this title based on such a violation.”

        Let me guess – you think the penalty for both parties should be zero, but you’re going to concern-troll about how if they were *serious* they’d propose a stiffer sentence derp derp.

  25. This is an absolute bullshit fake bill. There is no intention of passing anything. He’s just trying to con his primary voters.

    1. Politician has political motives – film at 11!!!

    2. Im sure his primary opponent will be anti-abortion too. At least at 20 weeks.

      1. Right, but it’s all about perception. He knows that incumbents have the advantage, especially where there’s little to no difference in opinion.

        If you’ve got a Tea Party candidate going on about how Lindsey is a big gov’t pork slopper, Graham isn’t gonna make it through the primary. If you’ve got everybody up there agreeing that abortion is bad, Graham is gonna get the votes on name recognition alone.

        1. Agreed. Now his primary opponent is reduced to “I’d propose a total ban on abortion!” or “I agree with my opponent”. The first makes him look unready for prime-time, Roe v. Wade already blocked that. The second is exactly what Graham wants. No single issue conservative abortion voters are going to defect now.

  26. Seekingdivinity: DreamstimeSome Republican politicians evidently believe that fighting the Culture War is a winning electoral strategy.

    Do you know where else personhood was just a “cultural” topic and not a fundamental moral principle?

    I’ll give you a hint: Gulag.

  27. Hell no. These are state issues, not federal.

    Someone vote this lisped fucker out of office already.

    1. Re: The Immaculate Trouser,

      Hell no. These are state issues, not federal.

      Completely and totally agree with you, except that Roe v. Wade turned into a federal issue thanks to liberal judges.

      1. That is true, and I favor state legislation as existed pre-Roe v Wade.

  28. A recent Quinnipiac poll found 55 percent of voters support the 20-week limit,

    So much for mocking the idea that anti-abortion legislation is mere “cultural war.”

    1. Why is a majority of the country fighting this retarded culture war, derp derp.

      1. I should’ve written “So much for mockingly regard anti-abortion legislation as mere ‘culture war'” but I pressed the Submit button too soon.

        1. I wasn’t trying to rebut you, in case there was any doubt.

  29. Speaking of unborn babies, we went to the doc yesterday and we’re four weeks out but they said we could expect her to come sometime a week from now onward. All I know is that if she comes on the 30th, it better not interfere with me watching the game against that school up north. That would suuuuuuuuck.

    1. Re: sloopy,

      All I know is that if she comes on the 30th, it better not interfere with me watching the game against that school up north.

      Ha! N00b! You can kiss your free time goodbye!

      1. Noob? This’ll be my fourth and Banjos 2nd. Hell, I’ve already mastered the art of the space-out.

    2. Went today. There’s a 6.5lb baby in there. He’s got a fat face and him mom’s lips. Ours could come any time in the next 5 weeks. Probably on the late side rather than the early.

      1. 6.5 lbs already? That baby ain’t gonna stay in there past Thanksgiving. No way.

  30. Re: LynchPin1477,

    Whether or not that experience rises to the formal definition of “pain”, whatever that is, doesn’t seem important to me when considering the concept of suffering.

    The usual justification for dismissing the notion of personhood for a human fetus is that a fetus is not (take your pick) viable, thinking, capable of feeling pain, etc.

    All are non sequiturs, as personhood is not grated to a human because that human complies with a comprehensive list of prerequisites but because *I* as a human cannot remove personhood from another human. *I* don’t have that right – PERIOD.

    In a nutshell, abortion is nothing more than yet another manifestation of positive rights which are antitethical to natural rights and the Non Aggression Principle.

  31. Bill to Ban Abortions After 20 Weeks

    Wouldn’t this end the abortion wars?

    If the Republicans got their reduced abortion window how can they come back and try to ban it entirely?

    My guess this is why the dems would never go for it. Ending the abortion wars would be devastating to the dems.

    1. Take a gander at the top of the thread. A couple commenters are hoping that if this passes, then it’s a matter of a few more baby steps to a total ban.

      Banning abortion after 20 weeks won’t end anything…it is just the beginning. It’s also why Republicans will never occupy the whitehouse again if they keep this up. *shrug* No skin off my nose…

  32. Sure, we can win without women. We just have to repeal that pesky amendment.

  33. This is all about Grahmesty trying to fool the bible thumpers in South Carolina in the primary so he can keep his job and push an amnesty for illegals.

  34. “Some Republican politicians evidently believe that fighting the Culture War is a winning electoral strategy.”
    No, some, though of course not all (mere greedy opportunists are of course everywhere for any matter), are men of principle greater than mere limited reason, as our Founders knew, believing and holding that a mere majority of nine manifestly deranged, lawless, fascist, unelected judges like infamous Warren, Brennan & especially appropriately named BLACKmun, are unfit even to interpret the Constitution, much less to rule this CONSTIUTTIONAL republic by what is/was effectively their own allegedly exalted, divine fiat, and should have their vile lawlessness reversed and rebuked at every opportunity until our land is cleansed of the vile, lethal contagion of abortion’s moral filth universally condemned until the 1973 lunacy this website evidently embraces.

  35. Thankfully Galileo wasn’t as blind as Bailey that this kind of cherry picking of “authorities” is true “science” by “consensus” or we’d still be teaching the sun revolved around the earth like Bailey would have held if he were consistent in his laughable methodology prostrate before dubious pro-abort “authorities” who do it for $ sex & power while pretending to be scientists.

  36. This is undoubtedly one of the most difficult issues to grapple with. The question of life is not one to be handled lightly. Life, liberty, the pursuit of happiness are not rights that flow from any government. They are inalienable rights that belong to us as humans. When do these rights attach to us? One week, twenty weeks, birth? Are we really considering using pain thresholds as a measurement of legitimacy? Personally, I believe in defending life irrespective of its age or form. I also believe the US is a diverse nation and one size does not fit all. Most social issues should be decided at the state level, and I hope the marijuana legalization movements in CO and WA move us in that direction.

  37. Understanding, of course, that Graham undoubtedly has less than noble intentions here and is really just putting on a dog and pony show for his primary challenge, belittling the 20 week ban is somewhat ironic coming from Reason given how strongly they endorsed Gary Johnson’s presidential campaign. His platform called for outlawing all 3rd trimester abortions. 20 weeks isn’t really that different than 24.

    1. Bingo. I can see Graham: “OK, 24 weeks it is! It’s a deal, then?”

  38. Wait…I thought Libertarians love Quixotic exercises which effectively bring issues up for debate and help move the parties toward your larger policy goals? Isn’t that why anyone would vote for a presidential candidate who gets 1% of the vote? Wasted vote, right?

    Consider Graham’s bill in this context — it has 50 times greater likelihood of becoming law than a Libertarian has of becoming President.

    As for the policy itself, it’s not clear to me how a woman’s “liberty” to kill her viable 20 week old baby somehow trumps her baby’s liberty to live. You girls must have an awful time figuring out the liberties of abortion, just like the rest of us.

  39. I thought Libertarians were all about being the logical party?

    What does it matter if the fetus feels pain or not?

    If I’m paralyzed and can’t feel pain is it ok for you to abuse, molest, or rape my body? Of course not. Pain is not an indicator of whether or not you are a human. Does the fetus feel pain? Irrelevant question. Is it a human being? Yes.

  40. In other words, while fetuses can react to pain, at the 24-week stage of brain development there is no subject present that is capable of experiencing pain.

    This is perplexing.

    One can only react to something if one can experience it. So this dollop of ‘science’ is wrong right out of the gate. With such a flawed assumption, can anything else be considered truly valid?

  41. It’s getting to the point where the liberals won’t be happy with abortion until mom poses with a photo of her and the full term baby before it’s killed.

    You have to draw a line somewhere between infanticide and “lifestyle treatments”.

    Does a twenty something vote for Mary’s right to kill her baby, yet she would never do that to her own? I think that is really where we are right now – arguing theory as to when it’s murder and when it’s not.

  42. So, Grahammy-poo… we need to enact a law to cover the 1.3% of abortions that occur outside the purview of current reality?!

    98.7% already meet the law you want to enact. That 1.3% is really worth the effort? You astound me.

    How about a law punishing the fraction of people who drive 95 mph in a 70 mph zone? Oh, wait… we already have that.

    Jeez. Talk about political posturing and waste of time and energy…

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