For a second time, Senate Democrats have objected to a resolution introduced by Sen. Mike Lee (R-UT) that calls upon the Senate to review public policies that led to the illegal abortion practices of Kermit Gosnell and others like him.
Kermit Gosnell was convicted of three counts of first-degree murder in the deaths of infants born alive during abortion procedures. He and his staff “snipped” the spinal cords of babies who survived botched late-term abortions.
Sen. Richard Blumenthal (D-CT) claimed for a second time that the resolution should address other health care workers, such as dentists, engaging in objectionable practices, rather than focusing solely on abortion practices.
I believe this problem is broader than the issue cited in Senator Lee’s resolution. I believe the misconduct alleged in the Gosnell case was abhorrent, but I’m also concerned about patient safety in all instances. Any time patient safety is threatened because of criminal behavior or malpractice whether in clinics, hospitals, or dental offices, the perpetrator should be prosecuted to the full extent of the law.
Lee’s resolution has 26 additional cosponsors and resolves that “Congress and States should gather information about and correct abusive, unsanitary, and illegal abortion practices and the interstate referral of women and girls to facilities engaged in dangerous or illegal second- and third-trimester procedures.”
In addition, Lee’s resolution recognizes that “there is substantial medical evidence that an unborn child is capable of experiencing pain at 20 weeks after fertilization, or earlier.” It also argues that “there is compelling governmental interest in protecting the lives of unborn children beginning at least from the stage at which substantial medical evidence indicates that they are capable of feeling pain.”
In response to objections from Blumenthal and other Senate Democrats, Lee said, “With numerous reports of similar instances surfacing around the country, the need for greater regulatory oversight of these so-called clinics is so plainly obvious it strains the limits of disbelief to think all members of the Senate would not agree.”