A day after a federal court upheld a similar bill in Arizona, the U.S. House of Representatives failed to pass a bill that would have banned most abortions in the 20th week of pregnancy and on in the District of Columbia.
The bill would have added the U.S. capital to the nine states that have approved laws since 2010 limiting abortions after 20 weeks. The Guttmacher Institute, an abortion rights organization, estimates that 1.5 percent of abortions take place after 21 weeks of pregnancy.
Despite wide support among Republican lawmakers, the Pain-Capable Unborn Child Protection Act failed by a 220-154 vote. The House suspended its usual rules for the vote, meaning that a two-thirds majority of those present was needed to pass.
The science supporting these kinds of measures is not really science at all, but that hasn’t stopped Republican lawmakers from pushing fetal pain bans. It also hasn’t stopped federal courts from accepting the faulty science and codifying it into law.
Photo from Gage Skidmore via flickr.