Current Congressional Legislation Regarding Abortion
This article originally appeared in this issue of the WSR: 2017-02-08

In the first months of the Trump administration, Congress is working quickly to introduce a number of bills to defund Planned Parenthood and support the life of every human being.

Since the disposition of these bills is important to those fighting Planned Parenthood, we present here the current status of 12 of these bills. Neither American Life League nor STOPP International supports any legislation that contains abortion exceptions. Thus, any bill that has exceptions noted is not one we support. We will keep this list updated in the Wednesday STOPP Report over the next few months.

Bills with HR are House bills and those with S are in the Senate.

HR 681   Life at Conception Act    60 cosponsors   In House Judiciary Committee
Declares that right to life guaranteed by Constitution is vested in each born and preborn human being.
No exceptions: ALL supports this bill.

S 231   Life at Conception Act of 2017   9 cosponsors   In Senate Judiciary Committee
Equal protection under 14th Amendment for the right to life of each born and preborn human person.
Unfortunately, this version of the bill contains the following: “Nothing in this Act shall be construed to require . . . a prohibition on in vitro fertilization, or a prohibition on use of birth control or another means of preventing fertilization.” Thus, ALL does not support this bill.

HR 586   Sanctity of Human Life Act   25 cosponsors   House Judiciary
The right to life guaranteed by the Constitution is vested in each human being, and is the paramount and most fundamental right of a person; and the life of each human being begins with fertilization, cloning, or its functional equivalent.
This bill does not have exceptions, but ALL’s scientific advisors find the wording of the bill, particularly the term “functional equivalent,” to be troublesome. We prefer HR 681.

HR 354   Defund Planned Parenthood Act   136 cosponsors   House Energy & Commerce
This bill prohibits, for a one-year period, the availability of federal funds for any purpose to Planned Parenthood.
Exception: Abortions in case of rape, incest, or life of mother.
Provide non-abortion funds to the community health center program
Exception: Can provide funds for abortions in case of rape, incest, or life of mother.

S 241   Defund Planned Parenthood Bill   25 cosponsors   Senate committees
TEXT OF BILL NOT YET AVAILABLE (2/6/17)

HR 7   No Taxpayer Funding for Abortion   101 cosponsors   Passed by House 
This bill makes permanent the prohibition on the use of federal funds, including funds in the budget of the District of Columbia, for abortion or health coverage that includes abortion.
Exceptions: Prohibitions do not apply to abortions in cases of rape or incest, or where a physical condition endangers a woman's life unless an abortion is performed.

S 184   No Taxpayer Funding for Abortion   38 cosponsors   Senate Finance
This bill makes permanent the prohibition on the use of federal funds, including funds in the budget of the District of Columbia, for abortion or health coverage that includes abortion.
Exceptions: Prohibitions do not apply to abortions in cases of rape or incest, or where a physical condition endangers a woman's life unless an abortion is performed. 

HR 853   No Federal Funding for Abortion Act   0 cosponsors   House Energy & Commerce
To prohibit federal funding to entities that do not certify the entities will not perform, or provide any funding to any other entity that performs, an abortion.
TEXT OF BILL NOT YET AVAILABLE (2/6/17)

HR 217   Title X Abortion Provider Prohibition Act   7 cosponsors   House Energy & Commerce
To prohibit family planning grants from being awarded to any entity that performs abortions. 
Exceptions for rape, incest, or life of mother.

HR 490   Heartbeat Protection Act   9 cosponsors   House Judiciary
Abortions prohibited without a check for fetal heartbeat, or if a fetal heartbeat is detectable.
The bill contains the following exception: “Does not apply to an abortion that is necessary to save the life of a mother whose life is endangered by a physical disorder, physical illness, or physical injury, including a life-endangering physical condition caused by or arising from the pregnancy itself, but not including psychological or emotional conditions.” 

HR 36   Pain Capable Unborn Child Protection   81 cosponsors   House Judiciary
The abortion shall not be performed or attempted, if the probable post-fertilization age, as determined under paragraph (1), of the unborn child is 20 weeks or greater. 
Exceptions: Rape, incest, or life of mother. Although the bill does contain statements supporting life even for the exception cases, there is no reason for the exceptions to be there in the first place. 

HR 147   Prenatal Nondiscrimination Act (PRENDA)   55 cosponsors   House Judiciary Committee
To prohibit discrimination against the unborn on the basis of sex or race, and for other purposes.
We still have our advisors reviewing this bill and will update our position in the future.