The U.S. House of Representatives
will vote Tuesday on a bill that would outlaw all abortions in Washington, D.C. after
20 weeks – with the only exception to save a mother from immediate death.
Center for Inquiry (CFI) opposes this measure, and urges its members to contact
their representatives to ask him or her to vote no.
H.R. 3803, sponsored
by Rep. Trent Franks (R-AZ), would prevent a woman from having an abortion in
many important situations: where continuing a pregnancy could put at risk her
health or ability to bear children in the future; where she is suffering from
mental illness; and where she has learned of a severe or fatal fetal anomaly. It
would also impose criminal penalties on any physician found to violate the law,
including up to $250,000 in fines and two years in prison.
This bill is wrong for several reasons.
H.R. 3803 is based on the assumption that
fetuses can experience pain at 20 weeks. However, this is unsupported by existing
scientific research, which suggests fetuses do not experience pain until at
least 29 or 30 weeks. Furthermore, only 1.4 percent of
all abortions happen after 21 weeks, and those usually occur due to urgent health
dangers or difficulty accessing abortion services.
The bill also clearly violates almost 40 years
of Supreme Court jurisprudence. The Court has held consistently – in Roe v. Wade (1973), Doe v. Bolton (1973), and Planned
Parenthood v. Casey (1992) – that our Constitution provides women with the
right to choose whether to have an abortion.
Reproductive health care laws should be based on
science and reason, and women should have the right to make their own
reproductive choices. Message your House Representative today and tell
him or her to reject H.R. 3803!
URGENT: Tell Your Representative to Reject Bill to Ban Abortion in D.C.
Dear [Decision Maker],
As a friend of the Center for Inquiry, I am writing to you with serious concerns over Tuesday's vote on H.R. 3803, a bill that would outlaw all abortions in Washington, D.C. after 20 weeks -- with the only exception to save a mother from immediate death.
Sincerely,[Your Name] [Your Address] [City, State ZIP]
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