Partial Birth Abortion Ban Essay Example
Partial Birth Abortion Ban Essay Example

Partial Birth Abortion Ban Essay Example

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  • Pages: 10 (2692 words)
  • Published: November 12, 2017
  • Type: Essay
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Abortion in the United States has been a subject of ongoing and intense controversy since the landmark 1973 Supreme Court case of Roe v. Wade.

Ever since the landmark ruling in Wade v. Wade, which deemed laws against abortions unconstitutional, Conservatives and Liberals have been at odds. However, a new issue has arisen with regards to abortion legislation: partial birth abortions. President Bush recently enacted a law that prohibits these procedures, showcasing our legislative process in action. It will be intriguing to witness the enforcement of this law and any obstacles it may encounter, both legally and otherwise. The public's attention was drawn to the controversy surrounding partial birth abortions in 1993 when Dr. Martin Haskell of Ohio provided instructions on how to perform the procedure to the National Right to Life Committee, an anti-abortion interest group (www.).

The abortion procedure is perf


ormed (, 11/10/03). a situation where a physician is aware and intentionally...

According to the source, the procedure consists of delivering a living unborn child's body until either the entire baby's head or any part of the baby's trunk past the navel is outside the mother's body. The head remains inside the womb while the back of the child's skull is punctured and their brains are extracted.

The movement to outlaw partial birth abortions gained momentum in 1995 following the Republican party's takeover of Congress (, 7/8/03).

Congress has managed to pass a prohibition on partial birth abortions, even though President Clinton had previously vetoed it. The ban categorizes the procedure as "gruesome and inhumane" and deems it both medically unnecessary and illegal. Medical practitioners who are convicted of performing this procedure can face fines or up t

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two years of imprisonment.

The Partial Abortion Ban was introduced to Congress on February 13, 2003. It received approval in the Senate on October 21, 2003 with a vote of 64-33 and in the House on October 2, 2003 by a vote of 281-142. President Bush signed the bill into law on November 5, 2003. There are supporters and opponents of this legislation. Conservative anti-abortion groups such as National Right to Life Committee (NRLC) and American Life League support the bill (11/17/03).

Planned Parenthood, National Abortion Federation, and Naral Pro-Choice America (source:, 11/10/03) are pro-choice organizations opposing anti-abortion laws.

Advocates for women's right to choose, including Republicans and Democrats in Congress, are engaged in a major controversy concerning the Ban (org, 10/21/03). The central issue in this debate is whether the Ban aligns with constitutional principles. Though it enjoys broad support from members of both parties, opponents argue that it could potentially infringe upon the constitutional right to privacy protected by the fourteenth amendment. Additionally, critics emphasize its lack of a provision for situations where the mother's health is at risk (web.

According to on 9/30/03, opponents of the Ban argue that a child who has been fully born should be regarded as a legal person with constitutional safeguards. On the other hand, supporters of the Ban assert that a child who has been completely born is entitled to constitutional protections, in accordance with the United States Constitution. Historically, the Republican Party has consistently supported conservative ideology and therefore traditionally opposes abortion, which has had widespread prevalence.

The Partial Birth Abortion Ban case is no different. Congressman Steve Chabot from Ohio primarily wrote and sponsored the bill,

while Senator Rick Santorum from Pennsylvania also sponsored it. Both Chabot and Santorum are Republicans. (www. house. gov/chabot/pblaw2003, 11/17/03).

The Republican Party will receive recognition and advantage from endorsing and strongly backing the prohibition on partial-birth abortion. This will draw in conservative Pro-Life advocates, a group that President Bush, who strongly supports anti-abortion laws, has praised the Senate for approving. The ban specifically aims to address a procedure deemed offensive and in violation of human dignity. reported today's action on 3/13/03, which is a significant step towards establishing a culture of life in America.

This is an important strategy for President Bush to gain support from conservative right-wing voters and for members of Congress in conservative states who are running for reelection. However, the Republican party's endorsement of anti-abortion measures may negatively impact their chances with liberal Democrats who are against the Partial Birth Abortion Ban. Critics claim that those responsible for this legislation intend to utilize it as a way to contest the influential Roe v. Wade ruling.

The Republicans are utilizing the criminalization of "partial birth abortion" as a foundation to restrict a woman's right to choose, as stated by They have backing from anti-choice activists who hold right-wing beliefs and possess an extensive legislative agenda.

This perspective on the Ban encompasses various Democratic opinions and may lead to a decrease in votes for Ban supporters. Both the sponsors and advocates of the Partial Birth Abortion Ban have garnered significant attention from voters across the political spectrum. While many liberal Democrats oppose the bill due to concerns about women's rights, the general public overwhelmingly supports the Ban. According to a recent Gallup poll, 70%

of respondents favored the Ban while 25% opposed it (, 7/8/03). Despite the majority of voters supporting the ban, it creates a division amongst pro-choice and pro-life voters.

This factor will influence the decisions of swing voters. Supporters of the Ban, who are against abortion, are more inclined to vote for its proponents as they work towards enacting additional anti-abortion laws. Conversely, advocates for a woman's right to choose are less likely to back the sponsors of the Ban due to their opposition towards leaders who might enforce stricter regulations on abortion. The opinions of female voters hold significant importance in shaping the outcomes of the Partial Birth Abortion Ban.

The issue of women's right to choose abortion has been a highly debated and contentious subject. The Partial Birth Abortion Ban, which places limitations on abortion, marks the first legislation since the landmark Roe v. Wade case in 1973 (source:, 3/13/03).

Women who have concerns that the Ban may lead to additional limitations or a total prohibition on abortion are less inclined to back its sponsors. Although there are other voter groups with firm stances on the Partial Birth Abortion Ban, their impact on the reelection of the Ban sponsors is not as significant. Pro Choice organizations such as Planned Parenthood tend to support liberal candidates due to their stance on abortion. In contrast, the sponsors of the Ban align themselves more closely with conservative politics.

The impact of enacting the Ban on voters who would have backed a more progressive candidate anyway is minimal. However, right-leaning Pro-Life organizations like the National Right to Life Committee are inclined to support the sponsors of the Ban due

to their conservative beliefs. The bill's sponsors hold an advantage over other conservative contenders vying for the same position because they strongly advocate for anti-abortion legislation. In these instances, candidates are more likely to target moderate voters rather than those with extremist opinions. While factors such as ideology, electoral benefit, and legislative influence contribute to proposing a policy, ideology seems crucial in the context of the Partial Birth Abortion Ban. The Ban aligns with conventional conservative Republican stances on Pro-Life issues, making it an appropriate bill choice for a Republican sponsor.

The Ban exemplifies the principles of conservatism by prioritizing order over freedom and equality. It enforces the prohibition of partial birth abortions before granting the mother the choice to undergo the procedure. Senator Santorum, sponsor of the bill in the Senate, illustrates this conservative belief by paralleling the Roe decision with the nation's previous endorsement of slavery, asserting both prioritize "the liberty rights of some over the life rights of others" (www).

According to (9/8/03), while the ideology is the primary factor in sponsoring the Partial Birth Abortion Ban, other factors such as electorate advantage and legislative influence also play a role. Political figures are always aiming to gain support from voters and increase their influence on important legislative matters. By sponsoring a bill, the sponsor receives significant attention from Congress, voters, and even the President. This attention effectively communicates the sponsor's message to all audiences.

Both positive and negative attention can result from sponsorship. Supporters of a sponsor's proposal receive positive attention, while those who disagree experience negative attention. When it comes to the Partial Birth Abortion Ban, supporters, particularly those who are pro-choice, benefit

in two ways. Firstly, this ban gives them an advantage during reelection as their supporters will be more inclined to vote for them. Secondly, by passing the ban, it paves the way for additional abortion-related legislation and enhances their influence in Congress.

The Congress has made previous attempts to ban the Partial Birth Abortion Ban, but President Clinton vetoed the bill twice. In 2000, a similar law in Nebraska was overturned by the Supreme Court, which has posed difficulties for passing the current ban. There is speculation that because of similarities in language between the Nebraska ban and the current Partial Birth Abortion Ban, it may encounter legal challenges and be declared unconstitutional in the future (source:

According to a report by Associated Press (com, 9/18/03), it is noteworthy to observe the effect of President Bush signing the Partial Birth Abortion Ban on his campaign, considering its recent occurrence and its proximity to an election. President Bush has unequivocally expressed his opposition to abortion and his determination to advocate for legislation against it (www. msgop. org/PartialBirth. htm, 11/5/03).

The impending election will lead to a rift between Republicans and Democrats over a crucial issue: President Bush's staunch conservative stance on appointing Supreme Court Justices, especially those who align with his views on abortion. If Bush secures another term, he will undoubtedly nominate such Justices. Additionally, he must exert effort to appeal to undecided voters who may not share the same pro-life perspective.

While there are those who back the ban, others view it as a potential catalyst for additional anti-abortion legislation. Consequently, implementing this bill has the potential to greatly influence public opinion of the politician. Congressman Chabot

and Senator Santorum both hold prominent roles in Congress that empower them to persuade their peers to support the Partial Birth Abortion Ban. Congressman Chabot serves as Chairman of the House Subcommittee on the Constitution and Vice-Chairman of the House Subcommittee on the Middle East (www).

According to a House of Representatives website, Representative Chabot mentioned on 11/17/03 that Senator Santorum is the 3rd Ranking Republican in the Senate. He serves as the Conference Chairman and also holds the position of Chairman of the Subcommittee on Social Security and Family Policy (

As per information from on 11/5/03, these two individuals, who hold prominent positions in Congress, successfully sponsored the bill for the Partial Birth Abortion Ban and garnered significant backing.

Members of Congress are inclined to endorse and give consideration to legislation they introduce due to their reverence for their positions and previous accomplishments. The larger the number of bills that are approved, the higher the regard a member of Congress attains, leading to increased influence. Similar to numerous other bills in Congress, there has been substantial opposition against the Partial Birth Abortion Ban. As previously stated, organizations that oppose measures against abortion have played a prominent role in opposing this ban. Planned Parenthood of America is one particular group actively engaged in fighting against this ban.

Opponents of the ban contend that its implementation would infringe upon a woman's right to choose and argue that it is unconstitutional. They assert that the ban fails to acknowledge exceptions based on a woman's health. These individuals are committed to exploring all legal avenues, such as initiating a federal lawsuit, in order to halt the enforcement of the ban.


to on 9/15/03, it is believed that women, instead of politicians, should be in charge of deciding the most efficient and safe medical treatment.Public interest groups and members of Congress, including Senator Barbara Boxer from California, have opposed the ban citing its unconstitutionality. Senator Boxer specifically emphasized the lack of exemptions for cases where the mother's life is at risk due to pregnancy complications (, 3/13/03). Despite facing strong opposition, no compromises were made during the ban's time in Congress. Earlier this year, suggestions were made to include exceptions for maternal health and address constitutional concerns raised in Supreme Court hearings on similar state laws. However, both attempts to reach a compromise on the ban failed (foxnews).According to (3/13/03), there is speculation about taking the ban to the Supreme Court in order to address various issues.

Senator Boxer believes that the partial-birth abortion ban will become a law but will face legal challenges. She expects it to be declared unconstitutional and invalidated (, 9/18/03). The Partial Birth Abortion Ban demonstrates the pluralist model of policy making, where public interest groups highlighted the issue of partial birth abortions and received support from a legislator.

A bill addressing the issue of partial birth abortions was the subject of strong party divisions on whether it should be enacted into a law. The bill aimed to protect against a majority taking control and considered multiple interests at hand.

The only somewhat majority aspect of the policy making for this law was the requirement of a majority vote to approve the bill. Prior to writing this paper, I was unaware of the meticulous effort required to pass a bill in Congress

and subsequently obtain the President's endorsement. My previous belief was that a Congressman simply proposed a policy idea, discussed it in Congress, and if victorious, presented it to the President for signing. However, I discovered that this is an incorrect assumption. After reviewing numerous pages of Congressional hearings on the bill, I was astounded by the immense level of detail involved. Additionally, there was a substantial number of individuals who appeared before Congress to provide testimonies either in favor or against the bill.

The bill's sponsors were lucky that President Bush agreed with the ban, as it had previously been vetoed twice by President Clinton. It would be disheartening to put in all the effort to pass a bill, only to have to restart from the beginning due to a presidential veto. The policy's passing was heavily influenced by ideology, with both the bill and its sponsors being strongly conservative.

The ideology presented diverse opinions from various public interest groups, some of which shared the same ideology while others had contrasting views. Through my research on this bill, I became aware of the significance of ideology. Conservatives strongly believed that this bill must be approved due to their belief that partial birth abortions were morally unacceptable (source:, 11/10/03). On the other hand, liberals held the opposite stance, arguing that passing the bill would violate constitutional rights (source: www.).

According to (10/21/03), it was fascinating to observe two contrasting perspectives on the same policy held by different groups of people. It was equally intriguing to witness the collaborative efforts of the three branches of government in order to establish the bill. Congress introduced and approved the bill,

the President gave it their authorization, and the Supreme Court possesses the authority to nullify the bill if it is deemed unconstitutional.

Each branch of government has the opportunity to have an impact on the bill during the process, which is beneficial but also slows down the process. This bill was proposed in February of this year and President Bush did not sign it until November! That is almost a year of effort to pass the bill! Overall, I was very impressed by the amount of work required to turn a bill into a law. Although our government system is often criticized for its lengthy policy-making process, I believe it is advantageous. The more each proposal is scrutinized, the more likely it is to succeed. Learning about the policy-making process made me realize that the framers of the constitution had the right idea and we have had many successes as a result.

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