All 2016 GOP presidential candidates back fetal pain ban – except Chris Christie (so far)
All but one of the likely 2016 Republican presidential hopefuls support limiting abortion after an unborn child can feel pain, according to CBN News.
CBN's David Brody collected letters from numerous potential GOP candidates stating their support for a 20-week national abortion ban.
Its backers include Louisiana Gov. Bobby Jindal, Indiana Gov. Mike Pence, Texas Gov. Rick Perry, Sen. Rand Paul, former Alabama Gov. Mike Huckabee, Sen. Ted Cruz, former Sen. Rick Santorum, Sen. Marco Rubio, and former Florida Gov. Jeb Bush.
In letters of support obtained by CBN News former Florida Gov. Jeb Bush calls the bill "humane" and "compassionate." Mike Huckabee says the effort is "pro-life and pro-woman." And Louisiana Gov. Bobby Jindal considers it "common sense”...
As for other potential Republican candidates, Texas Gov. Rick Perry signed a similar version of the bill in his state. And Rep. Paul Ryan, R-Wis., supported the House version.
However, not everyone had responded yet:
New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie has yet to provide a letter.
The Wall Street Journal reports that Christie is testing the presidential waters by meeting potential contributors on “wealthy Kiawah Island” – but the Palmetto State's voters are “skeptical of his views on conservative issues such as gay rights and abortion, along with his electability and his roots in the party's Northeast wing.” The faction conservatives called the Eastern Liberal Establishment, now often dubbed the Republican establishment, has made Chris Christie its candidate of choice at the moment.
So far Rand Paul and Marco Rubio have generated the most excitement in South Carolina, the Journal reports.
Last June, the House of Representatives passed the “Pain-Capable Unborn Child Protection Act,” introduced by Trent Franks, R-AZ. Then-House Minority Leader Eric Cantor insisted on adding exceptions for rape and incest to the bill shortly before its passage. A year later, Cantor lost his Republican Congressional primary to the underfunded but more populist conservative candidate David Brat.
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South Carolina Sen. Lindsey Graham introduced the fetal pain ban in the Senate five months later. "I don't want anybody carrying the Republican banner that doesn't get this,” Graham said of the 2016 primaries. “If you don't get this, then you're the extremist.”
If the bill becomes law, abortionists who perform late-term abortions may face a fine or up to five years in prison. A congressional report showed that 11,000 late-term abortions take place in the United States each year.
Although the Supreme Court has only granted the American people the right to restrict abortion after the point of viability, which it defines as 22 weeks, pro-life intellectuals hope, and some signs indicate, that the High Court's justices may reconsider that criteria if confronted with the realities of fetal pain.