Rep. Justin Amash (R-MI) lauded the introduction of a fetal pain bill, H.R. 3803. The bill, introduced to coincide with the National March for Life this week, outlaws abortions in the District of Columbia when the unborn child is at least 20 weeks old, the age at which babies can feel pain. Amash is an original cosponsor of the bill.
"The most fundamental right is the right to life," said Amash. "Surely, aborting a baby late in a pregnancy--when the baby would have to suffer through the pain of being killed--should not be permitted in a civilized society."
Under the bill, D.C. abortion providers must make a determination of the probable age of the unborn child. If the child is at least 20 weeks old, the provider is barred from performing an abortion unless necessary to prevent the death or substantial and irreversible physical impairment of the woman. The bill includes privacy protections for the women involved.
The Constitution authorizes Congress to "exercise exclusive Legislation in all Cases whatsoever," over the District of Columbia. Amash serves on the Committee on Oversight and Government Reform, which has jurisdiction over D.C.