Partial Birth Abortion

As a Roman Catholic who believes very deeply in the sanctity of human life, I am shocked and saddened by President Clinton's veto of the Partial Birth Abortion Ban Act. Whether you are "pro-life" or "pro-choice," this ghastly procedure is about as close as you can get to infanticide, and it is incomprehensible that President Clinton is opposing this important, life-saving legislation.

The Partial Birth Abortion Ban Act would criminalize what I call "execution-style," partial-birth abortions, which are used in the final months of pregnancy. The procedure involves an abortionist pulling a living baby feet first from the womb, except for the head. Scissors are then thrust through the base of the baby's skull to create a hole in which a tube is inserted. The baby's brain is then sucked out, causing the skull to collapse and the baby to die.

President Clinton claims that partial-birth abortions are necessary to save a woman's life or preserve her health. However, based on lengthy testimony by notable medical professionals, the House Judiciary Committee has determined that the overwhelming majority of partial-birth abortions are not done for any medical reasons at all. A large portion involve healthy young teenagers who have concealed the pregnancy until the baby is very far developed. Dr. Martin Haskell, who operates abortion clinics in Ohio and is an expert in the use of the partial-birth abortion, has written that he uses this abortion technique "routinely" on "all" women seeking abortions from 4 to 5 months. Dr. Haskell said that in his practice, 80 percent of the abortions are "purely elective" (American Medical News).

There is overwhelming support by the American people to override President Clinton's shameless veto of the Partial Birth Abortion Act. You will be pleased to know that on September 19, 1996, the House voted to override Bill Clinton's veto, with my strong support, by a vote of 285-137. Tragically, the Senate failed to override this veto. You can rest assured that I will continue to do everything I can to ensure partially-born children are not subjected to such inhumane torture.

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