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Protection of newborn babies wins unanimous Senate support

WASHINGTON (BP)–The U.S. Senate has passed without opposition a measure providing legal protection to newborn babies.

In a 98-0 vote, senators approved the Born Alive Infants Protection Act June 29 as an amendment to the Patients’ Bill of Rights. The measure grants federal protection to any newborn fully outside his mother’s womb.

The House of Representatives overwhelmingly adopted the bill last year, but the Senate failed to act on it.

The bill was proposed last year after the U.S. Supreme Court struck down a state ban on partial-birth abortion and after congressional testimony was heard describing an abortion procedure in which newborns who survive are allowed to die. The method, used at Christ Hospital in Chicago, is called live-birth abortion. Babies are induced, and if they fail to die during the process, they are left unattended to die.

“In this current debate over the Patients’ Bill of Rights, it is appropriate that we extend patient protections to those in our society who are least able to defend themselves,” said Sen. Rick Santorum, R.-Pa., chief sponsor of the bill, “and I applaud my Senate colleagues for putting partisanship aside today to protect the lives of innocent newborn babies.”

The Southern Baptist Ethics & Religious Liberty Commission and nearly all other pro-life organizations support the bill.

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