On February 25, the Senate voted on two commonsense pro-life bills. One was about ending abortion at the point where a preborn baby can feel pain, called the Pain-Capable Unborn Child Protection Act, and the other would protect babies born after a failed abortion, known as the Born-Alive Abortion Survivors Protection Act. Both failed to pass. 

Sadly, the result isn’t surprising, but it is deeply disappointing. What’s wrong with protecting babies born alive after an abortion or making sure that preborn babies are not tortured to death during the abortion process?

Senator Lindsey Graham, who championed the Pain-Capable Unborn Child Protection Act, visited a South Carolina pregnancy resource center and shared some of his thoughts the day before the vote.

“At 20 weeks we know the child can feel pain. The medical science tells us that,” Senator Graham said. “That if you operate on a child at 20 weeks, you have to provide anesthesia because the child can feel pain.”

This is true, in fact preborn babies may actually feel pain earlier than 20 weeks and more intensely than older infants because their nerve fibers are closer to the surface of the skin. Even in Neonatal Intensive Care Units (NICU), physicians have discovered that young preemie babies, born between 24-32 weeks of pregnancy, have their brain chemistry changed as a result of time spent in the NICU with all the medical treatments and surgeries that they must endure to stay alive. To argue that preborn and premature babies don’t feel pain is unscientific and just pro-abortion propaganda aimed at protecting the abortion industry and not vulnerable and defenseless preborn babies. 

The White House agrees. In a statement, the White House said, “This bill reflects the most up-to-date scientific findings and a more compassionate and principled approach to determining permissible abortion timeframes. A legal framework for abortions centered upon viability, which is when an infant is able to survive outside the womb, is not morally justified if an unborn infant is capable of feeling pain well before that date.”

The second bill that was up for consideration was the Born-Alive Abortion Survivors Protection Act. This bill would protect babies born alive in botched abortions, which is something that happens every year in this country, with one report stating that 40 babies had survived, and most likely left to die, after failed abortions since 2016.

But despite multiple efforts in the House and Senate, the bill cannot gain enough support to pass. This is a travesty.

Senator Ben Sasse, who supported and championed this bill, shared his thoughts on the Senate floor: “America is dedicated to the proposition that all men and women, all boys and girls are created equal—even the littlest ones, even if they happen to come into the world in the most horrific of circumstances, even if they are crippled or inconvenient or ‘unwanted.’ America recognizes the immeasurable dignity of every human being, regardless of race or sex or creed or ability. If we’re hemming and hawing about whether it’s okay to let children die in neglect, we know we’ve lost part of our soul.”

There is no denying the truth in his statements.

As a country, we’ve lost something precious if we can’t agree that allowing a baby to die from exposure without offering medical aid is wrong. Abortion clinics and activists won’t support this legislation not because it doesn’t happen or that it’s impossible to do, but because abortion clinics are designed to take lives and not save them. Without federal requirements, this problem will just be swept under the rug and babies will continue to die without support.

When it comes to abortion, the United States is one of the most radical countries in the entire world. We are in the company of North Korea when it comes to abortion policy, which should alarm this entire country. Though these bills did not pass, the effort to fight for life has not and will not stop until all born and preborn babies are protected.