Tuesday, July 14, 2020

Defense Appropriations Mark-Up

Today, the House Committee on Appropriations passed the FY2021 Defense Appropriations bill by a vote of 30 to 22.

During committee consideration, Rep. Andy Harris (R-MD) offered an amendment preventing TRICARE funding to entities that fail to exercise the proper degree of care in the case of a child who survives an abortion or attempted abortion.

The amendment requires that any health care practitioner present exercise the same care that would be given to any other child born alive at the same gestational age.

The practitioner must then ensure that the child is immediately transported to a hospital.

The amendment requires the funding recipient to certify that it has sufficient resources to comply with this requirement and that it has reporting requirements in place for any violation.

The following Members spoke in support of the Harris Amendment:

Rep. Jaime Herrera Beutler (R-WA) said, “There is evidence that babies born alive are being killed or neglected after the fact… If a baby is born alive after an abortion, they deserve the same treatment under the law.” She highlighted several accounts supporting her statement that “this does happen.”

Rep. Herrera Beutler requested additional time to respond to Member statements in support of abortion: “When a baby has left a mother’s womb, it is not part of her body… This baby is already here…You’re not throwing your belief about being pro-choice out the window by saying, ‘once a baby is here, we’re going to protect it.’” She highlighted additional stories of abortion survivors.

Ranking Member Kay Granger (R-TX) said, “If a baby is born alive after an abortion, we must make sure that everything possible is done to preserve the life of the child.”

Rep. Ken Calvert (R-CA) said, “We must have the humanity to protect living, breathing infants outside of the womb.”

The Harris Amendment was defeated by a vote of 24 to 28.

In addition to the Republican members of the Committee, the amendment was supported by Rep. Sanford Bishop (D-GA) and Rep. Henry Cuellar (D-TX).

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