Sen. Susan Collins Wants to Codify Roe v. Wade in Federal Law but Maintain Religious Freedom

WASHINGTON, DC - MAY 11: U.S. Sen. Susan Collins (R-ME) questions Dr. Rochelle Walensky, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention Director, during a Senate Health, Education, Labor and Pensions Committee hearing to discuss the ongoing federal response to COVID-19 on May 11, 2021 in Washington, DC. (Photo by Greg Nash-Pool/Getty …
Greg Nash-Pool/Getty Images

Sen. Susan Collins (R-ME) said while she is pro-choice and actually supports codifying Roe v. Wade in federal law, the Democrats’ bill that would invalidate nearly all state laws that restrict abortion is even too “extreme” for her.

“I support codifying Roe,” Collins told the Los Angeles Times this week, calling parts of the legislation’s language “extreme.”

“Unfortunately, the bill … goes way beyond that,” she continued. “It would severely weaken the conscious exceptions that are in the current law.”

Collins said she is actively speaking with other senators on the possibility of introducing a bill that “truly would codify Roe.”

Collins expressed concern that the bill — reintroduced in June by Sens. Richard Blumenthal (D-CT) and Tammy Baldwin (D-WI), and by Reps. Judy Chu (D-CA), Lois Frankel (D-FL), Ayanna Pressley (D-MA), and Veronica Escobar (D-TX) — would weaken the Religious Freedom Restoration Act.

“This ‘carve out’ would be unprecedented, and I do not believe it is necessary to codify Roe,” she told the Times.

House Democrats are expected to vote Friday on the Women’s Health Protection Act (WHPA), which National Right to Life Committee (NRLC) News headlined in June as a measure that “protects abortion, not women.”

“The enthusiastic rush of Congressional Democrats to sponsor this bill shows once again that the top legislative priority for Democrats is more and more abortions paid for with tax dollars,” said Carol Tobias, NRLC president.

She explained the impact of WHPA:

The so-called Women’s Health Protection Act would essentially remove all legal protections for unborn children on the federal and state level. The Women’s Health Protection Act is, in effect, a no-limits-on-abortion-until-birth bill. Pro-abortion Democrats have yet to hear of an abortion-expansion bill they didn’t like and they are more than willing to push it on to the American people.

The bill states its aim is “to protect a person’s ability to determine whether to continue or end a pregnancy, and to protect a health care provider’s ability to provide abortion services.”

“Tragically, the only ones to benefit from such a law would be abortionists and abortion providers such as Planned Parenthood,” Tobias said. “This legislation endangers women and their unborn children, would expand taxpayer funding of abortion, and would no longer require that a woman be given information about the development of her unborn child.”

Democrats currently have 48 cosponsors of the bill in the Senate.

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