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Lawmakers propose protection of babies after failed abortions

A new state bill proposes criminal charges on doctors if they fail to preserve the life of infants born after botched abortions.

State Rep. Lois Landgraf, R-Colorado Springs, is sponsoring the Born-Alive Infant Protection Act in hopes to protect newborns in Colorado, one of four states that performs late-term abortions. Testimony on House Bill 1112 will be heard by the House Public Health Care and Human Services Committee March 3.

“This is about keeping a baby born alive, alive,” Rep. Landgraf told the Denver Catholic. “They deserve to be treated like any other baby and given a chance.”

The Colorado Catholic Conference, the Church’s lobbying arm in Colorado, supports the bill passed in similar forms in other states and on the federal level. Congress passed the Born-Alive Infants Protection Act of 2002 and it was signed by President George W. Bush.

Rep. Landgraf, who attends St. Dominic Church in Colorado Springs, said she decided to sponsor the bill when thinking about abortionist Kermit Gosnell, who was convicted in Philadelphia of murdering three viable babies after delivering them.

“I would like to make sure that it isn’t and that it won’t happen here,” she said.

She said the bill does not change the availability of abortion or pose criminal charges for not treating a non-viable baby—one that cannot survive outside a mother’s womb.

The bill would require a physician performing an abortion to take “medically appropriate and reasonable steps to preserve the life and health” of an infant if it shows signs of life including a heartbeat, breathing, an umbilical cord pulsation or movement.

“Personally, I don’t know of anyone who would vote against it,” Rep. Landgraf said. “Anyone who votes against it is voting to kill a baby.”

The conference encourages citizens to contact their state representatives in favor of the bill. For more information, visit www.cocatholicconference.org.

Read the bill here.

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