Pro-life Senator Steven Daines (R-Mont.) addressed the crowd during last Friday’s March for Life to announce that he is forming the first-ever caucus in the Senate to focus on pro-life issues. The caucus will be similar to one in the House of Representatives, which has been in existence since 1981. Sen. Daines hopes that the two groups can work together going forward to further pro-life legislation.
“We’re finally going have in the Senate what the House has had for many years, so that the House and the Senate can work together on having a more strategic approach in how we’re going to move pro-life policies to the president’s desk,” Daines said in an interview with the National Review. “This will allow us to bring the pro-life groups that work off the Hill, as well as pro-life senators and other staff on the Hill, to unify us so we’re all pulling in the same direction to advance the pro-life cause,” he added.
The caucus will focus primarily on judicial confirmations until the Senate Republicans have enough votes to override the Democratic legislative filibuster and pass pro-life bills. However, Daines also hopes to drum up support for other issues in the meantime, including the Pain Capable Unborn Child Protection Act. The act would ban abortion after 20 weeks of pregnancy, as that’s the time when scientific research suggests that preborn children can experience pain. The Pain Capable bill failed in the Senate last January, although a recent poll suggests that 60 percent of Americans would be in favor of such a ban.
Daines spoke to the National Review about the importance of these issues. “We’ll keep the fight up on important legislation like the Pain Capable Protection Act and the Born Alive Infant Protection Act,” he said. “We’ll be looking for ways we can find some common agreement, for example on late-term abortion. That should be stopped. There’s no reason the Pain Capable bill isn’t getting 60 votes. Public opinion is on our side there.”
It hasn’t yet been announced which senators will be joining the new caucus, although Daines mentioned that several pro-life colleagues have expressed an interest.