"[Senator Joe Manchin] is representing the pro-life people of his state, West Virginia, [which] is a very strong pro-life state. So, it makes sense that he wouldn't support a bill that would undo all of the work of state lawmakers in West Virginia [but would support] bills that represent the will of the people who live there."
"This gets every member of the Senate on record [regarding this extreme bill], including Democratic senators in places like Georgia and Arizona who are up for re-election in the next year [and] who are representing pro-life states but not acting pro-life in Washington."
The misnamed "Women's Health Protection Act," a bill already passed by the U.S. House in September, met defeat late Monday in the U.S. Senate when all Republicans who were present voted against it and were joined by a sole Democrat: Senator Joe Manchin of West Virginia.* (See sidebar)
On a 48-46 vote against cloture, the radical pro-abortion bill – which would have nullified every federal or state law restricting abortion, and effectively codified into federal law a right to abortion on demand until birth – was defeated before it even came up for a vote. Sixty votes were necessary to move H.R.3755 forward for debate and a vote.
Leading up to the Senate's consideration of the legislation, Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer referred to abortion as a "sacred" and "fundamental right." Marjorie Dannenfelser, president of Susan B. Anthony List, says such remarks prove that pro-abortion Democrats could not be "more radically out of touch" with Americans.
"Those who sided with the abortion lobby to trample the will of the people will face political consequences," Dannenfelser said after the bill's defeat. "We thank all of our pro-life Senate allies who spoke out about the extremism of this atrocious bill and helped defeat it."
On Thursday, Dannenfelser had released a memo to all senators detailing the bill's extreme provisions.
"[This bill] ignores the humanity of the baby and the health of the mother," says the memo. "It targets pro-life states by requiring their laws to be subject to the standards set by this bill, both preventing new laws and preventing enforcement of current laws."
The letter adds: "The bill would not even permit laws protecting women from the harms of dangerous, do-it-yourself chemical abortion without seeing a doctor first."
Pro-life reaction is pouring in
Lila Rose, president and founder of the pro-life group Live Action, says if the Women's Health Protection Act had passed it would be "the single most destructive piece of legislation enacted in the history" of the United States.
"Every abortion ends the life of an innocent human being, a child with intrinsic value," says Rose. "The only difference between them and us is their youth. Some lawmakers think the way to help Americans in need is to aid in the killing of their children. They are wrong. We must walk with families materially, emotionally, and spiritually to show them that they can choose life for their children."
Troy Newman, president of Operation Rescue, says last night's vote sends a strong message that America "is weary of the human suffering that abortion has inflicted on our nation" – and that those who voted against the bill "literally saved the lives of countless innocent children."
“[But] now is not the time to let our guard down," Newman continues. "[It] was a great victory, but I am sure this pro-abortion administration has more tricks up their sleeves that they will gladly use to ensure abortion profits continue to flow to their campaign donors in the Abortion Cartel."
* Six senators missed the vote: three Democrats (Dianne Feinstein, Ben Ray Lujan, and Raphael Warnock) and three Republicans (James Inhofe, John Kennedy, and Rand Paul).