Pastor Robert Jeffress, senior pastor of First Baptist Dallas, condemned United States Senators Monday with harsh words for failing to advance the Pain-Capable Unborn Child Protection Act, which would have banned most abortions after 20 weeks of pregnancy.
The bill fell well short of the 60-vote threshold required for the Senate to break a Democratic filibuster. The measure was defeated 51-46.
The outcome was not a surprise because the vote fell mostly along party lines. The bill has the strong back of the Trump administration and is identical to the one that passed in the House of Representatives in October and is similar to legislation that has already been adopted in 20 states.
"It is unconscionable that the cowardly United States Senate would not put an end to this barbaric practice of allowing late-term abortions when infants can feel pain," Jeffress said. "One senator claimed that advancing this bill was 'not a priority' for him. But If he were a baby in the womb, threatened with the excruciating pain of being torn from limb to limb, I'll guarantee you it would suddenly become a priority for him.
"The Senate's callousness reminds me of President Reagan's observation: 'Have you noticed that everyone who is for abortion has already been born?'"
Senator Rand Paul says we will all be held accountable for our stance on this issue.
"I believe there will be a time when we are judged by whether or not we stood up for life," Paul said on Twitter.
Sen. Lindsey Graham (R-S.C.), who sponsored the bill, said he won't give up the fight to protect the unborn.
"We didn't win the vote today, but we won hearts and minds," Graham said in a statement. "For more than three hours we debated on the floor of the Senate whether our great nation should end abortion on demand after 20 weeks. The arguments made on our behalf by my colleagues–including Senators Joni Ernst (R-Iowa) and Deb Fischer (R-Neb.)–were powerful and compelling. The arguments made against rang hollow."
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