By Anne Reed
After last week’s leak of the Supreme Court draft opinion in the Dobbs v. Jackson Women’s Health Organization case, Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer (D-NY) quickly focused his efforts on codifying the effects of the Roe v. Wade decision in the inaptly titled piece of federal legislation, the ”Women’s Health Protection Act (WHPA).” A version of the bill narrowly passed the House in September 2021. But with the filibuster rule requiring 60 votes, it failed to advance in the Senate.
Likewise, as expected, it failed to advance in yesterday’s 51-49 Senate procedural cloture motion vote when Democrats failed to meet the filibuster threshold of 60 votes. Democratic Sen. Joe Manchin (WVA) joined Republicans who all voted against it, arguing that the language is too extreme for the majority of Americans, infringing both on religious liberty and the rights of states to govern.
Had the bill become law, it would have put women at more risk by prohibiting states from enacting restrictions on abortions and accountability standards on abortionists.
“The Democrats are desperate to keep abortion on demand. Not only would this bill codify Roe and create a conflict should Roe be overturned, but it would also nullify almost all the pro-life laws already on the books. That would strip away the few protections pregnant women have from exploitation and leave abortion facilities unaccountable,” said Troy Newman, President of Operation Rescue. “We must be vigilant to block any future attempts to pass this radical bill, which would further endanger the lives of innocent babies and their mothers.”
The bill clearly states that abortionists could not be required by state law to comply with credentialing requests, wherein a committee of peers regularly reviews malpractice claims and their status with state licensing boards and state and federal controlled substance licenses, etc.
This legislation, therefore, could prevent a state from requiring an abortionist to maintain privileges at a nearby hospital where he or she would be subject to credentialing. In addition to the lack of accountability, this loophole has long facilitated a serious continuity of care issue when a patient has complications and seeks follow-up care at a nearby emergency room.
The bill also stipulates that governments could not limit an abortionist’s ability to prescribe drugs or utilize telemedicine for abortions. Therefore, a state would have no ability to regulate use of dangerous abortion inducing drugs or require medical oversight of their usage.
States could no longer require patients to see an ultrasound or abortion clinic staff to meet with a mother before ending the life of her child, dismissing the idea that a woman should research risks, consider her options, and think carefully about the decision.
Schumer claimed, “Senate Republicans will no longer be able to hide from the horror they’ve unleashed upon women in America.” The real horrors take place in abortion clinics. The abortion lobby once claimed its goal was “safe, legal, and rare” abortions. But this failed bill promotes dangerous abortion on demand with no limitations.