SPONSORED:

Democrats block abortion bill in Senate 

Senate Democrats blocked legislation on Monday meant to respond to a political firestorm sparked in Virginia over "late-term abortion."

Senators voted 53-44 on the legislation from Sen. Ben SasseBen SasseOvernight Energy: 5 takeaways from the Colonial Pipeline attack | Colonial aims to 'substantially' restore pipeline operations by end of week | Three questions about Biden's conservation goals Hillicon Valley: Colonial Pipeline attack underscores US energy's vulnerabilities | Biden leading 'whole-of-government' response to hack | Attorneys general urge Facebook to scrap Instagram for kids Utah county GOP censures Romney over Trump impeachment vote MORE (R-Neb.), which needed 60 votes to advance.

ADVERTISEMENT

Democratic Sens. Joe ManchinJoe ManchinIs the Constitution in the way of DC statehood? Biden 'encouraged' by meeting with congressional leaders on infrastructure Joe Manchin is wrong — D.C. statehood is constitutional MORE (W.Va.), Doug Jones (Ala.) and Bob CaseyRobert (Bob) Patrick CaseyA historic moment to truly honor mothers Democrats face big headaches on Biden's T spending plan The Hill's Morning Report - Presented by Facebook - GOP makes infrastructure play; Senate passes Asian hate crimes bill MORE Jr. (Pa.) voted to proceed to the bill. The legislation would penalize doctors who fail to "exercise the proper degree of care in the case of a child who survives an abortion or attempted abortion."

Majority Leader Mitch McConnellAddison (Mitch) Mitchell McConnellBiden says Beau's assessment of first 100 days would be 'Be who you are' McConnell says he's 'great admirer' of Liz Cheney but mum on her removal McConnell: 'Good chance' of deal with Biden on infrastructure MORE (R-Ky.) touted the bill ahead of Monday night’s vote, where it was widely expected to fall short, urging Democrats to reject “extreme voices” within their own party.

“It isn’t about new restrictions on abortion. It isn’t about changing the options available to women. It’s just about recognizing that a newborn baby is a newborn baby. Period,” he said.

Democrats blocked a previous attempt to pass the legislation and Senate Minority Leader Charles SchumerChuck SchumerBiden 'encouraged' by meeting with congressional leaders on infrastructure Republicans welcome the chance to work with Democrats on a bipartisan infrastructure bill Cheney sideshow distracts from important battle over Democrats' partisan voting bill MORE (D-N.Y.) argued on Monday that it's part of a pattern from Republicans, whom he accused of misrepresenting the bill.

“This vote does not occur in a vacuum. ... Pay attention to the facts and not false rhetoric. This bill is Washington politics at its worst,” he added.

Sen. Tim KaineTimothy (Tim) Michael KaineHow leaving Afghanistan cancels our post-9/11 use of force Manchin on collision course with Warren, Sanders On The Money: Incomes, consumer spending soared in March | Harris, senators work behind scenes on jobs package | Biden cancels some border wall construction MORE (D-Va.), who is Catholic, released a statement after the vote saying he opposed the bill because GOP statements about it are "misleading." 

"Congress reaffirmed that fact with its passage of the bipartisan Born-Alive Infants Protection Act in 2002. I support that law, which is still in effect. There is no need for additional federal legislation on this topic," Kaine said. 

President TrumpDonald TrumpWarren says Republican party 'eating itself and it is discovering that the meal is poisonous' More than 75 Asian, LGBTQ groups oppose anti-Asian crime bill McConnell says he's 'great admirer' of Liz Cheney but mum on her removal MORE sharply condemned the vote in a pair of Monday evening tweets:

Monday's vote comes after Virginia Gov. Ralph Northam (D) provoked outrage among anti-abortion groups, GOP lawmakers and the White House over his comments about a bill that would have made it easier for women to get third-trimester abortions if their health was threatened by pregnancy.

Kathy Tran, the sponsor of the Virginia bill, fueled the political firestorm when her comments acknowledging that the legislation would allow a woman who is dilating to request an abortion if a doctor determined that childbirth would impair her mental or physical health went viral.

Northam further inflamed tensions when he said on a local radio show that third-trimester abortions are rare and typically occur when an infant is severely deformed or unable to survive after birth.

"In this particular example, if a mother is in labor, I can tell you exactly what would happen: the infant would be delivered; the infant would be kept comfortable; the infant would be resuscitated if that's what the mother and the family desired. And then a discussion would ensue between the physicians and the mother," Northam said.

A spokeswoman for Northam told The Washington Post that his comments were being taken out of context by Republicans. 

—Updated at 8:54 p.m.