Tuesday, August 06, 2002

'Infants Protection Act' signed into law

The Cincinnati Enquirer

        Rep. Steve Chabot, R-Ohio, on Monday hailed President Bush's signing of the congressman's Born-Alive Infants Protection Act as an “important first step.”

        The legislation establishes that an infant who is born alive, at any stage of development, is considered a legal person for purposes of federal law. Most states have similar laws.

        The president said the issue of abortion divides Americans, but noted that the bill found common ground.

        After the bill-signing ceremony, Mr. Chabot said the legislation was necessary.

        “It sends a message that life is important and to be cherished and not just to be discarded with the trash,” Mr. Chabot said.

        Mr. Chabot's next goal is to get the Senate to approve his legislation that would prohibit so-called partial-birth abortion and punish doctors who perform it with a fine and up to two years in prison.

        The Supreme Court and lower courts have struck down state versions of the bill. Legislation was also twice vetoed by former President Clinton.

        Mr. Chabot hopes Senate Majority Leader Tom Daschle, D-S.D., will permit the bill on the floor for a vote. Sen. Daschle was one of 14 Democrats who voted for it last time.

        President Bush has said he would sign the bill.

        Mr. Chabot said he ideally would like to see a ban on all abortions, but acknowledged that such a prohibition would not pass Supreme Court review.

        His November congressional opponent, Democrat Greg Harris, has criticized Mr. Chabot for his advocacy of legislation limiting access to abortions.


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