Analysis

Politifact claims abortion survivors are adequately protected. The facts tell a different story.

Politifact, abortion survivors

North Carolina lawmakers tried to put protections in place for abortion survivors earlier this year, with Senate Bill 359, the “Born Alive Abortion Survivors Protection Act,” passing both the House and Senate. Unfortunately, Governor Roy Cooper vetoed the bill in April. Politifact weighed in, claiming that State Senator Joyce Krawiec’s statements on the need for the bill were “false.” But was Politifact actually accurate in its fact-checking?

Krawiec, one of the bill’s co-sponsors, said, “No, we do not have laws in place protecting babies who are born alive as the result of an abortion.” Politifact’s supposed fact-check of Krawiec’s comments cited numerous experts, who claimed that such a bill is not necessary. Neil Siegel, a professor at Duke Law School, told Politifact, “If you have a baby born alive, it doesn’t matter if it was born from a failed abortion or otherwise … it’s entitled to full constitutional protections.” Politifact also cited the “Born-Alive Infants Protection Act” as a reason why no further law is needed — a frequent pro-abortion rebuttal. Yet — as Politifact admits — that law includes no penalties whatsoever, making it “toothless and purely symbolic,” according to Dwight Duncan, a University of Massachusetts law professor quoted by Politifact.

Politifact also included a statement from Bill D’Elia, a spokesman for North Carolina Senator Phil Berger. “Under current state law, an intentional killing of a baby is covered by our murder statutes and a killing of an unborn baby is covered by the Unborn Victims of Violence Act, but there is no current statute that covers deliberately withholding care to a child born alive during an abortion,” D’Elia said to Politifact (emphasis added). “In theory, a medical professional could be charged with manslaughter for withholding care but it is not explicit in current state law.” The new law, D’Elia said, would have made it “clear.”

READ: PolitiFact’s abortion “fact-checking” is really political hackery

It’s interesting that Politifact chose to rate this claim as “false,” despite showing numerous examples of why Krawiec’s statement on the clear need for the law had merit. To this day, babies are still born alive after failed abortions, and there are virtually no protections for them under federal law. While existing laws claim to protect abortion survivors, they are — as pointed out by Duncan — only symbolic, giving lip service to the idea of protecting abortion survivors, while taking no action whatsoever. And these protections are sorely needed.

 

Live Action’s Inhuman investigation showed how abortionists cannot be trusted to give medical care to babies born alive during abortions. When an investigator visited the Family Planning Associates Medical Group in Phoenix, Arizona, abortionist Laura Mercer told the woman not to visit the emergency room if the baby was born alive. Instead, she told the woman to come back to the abortion facility, where they would do nothing to resuscitate the baby or help it survive.

Late-term abortionist Cesare Santangelo likewise told an investigator who visited his Washington Surgi-Clinic that he would do nothing to help a baby survive. “It would be, you know, uh, a person, a terminal person in the hospital, let’s say, that had cancer, you know?” he said. “You wouldn’t do any extra procedures to help that person survive. Like ‘do not resuscitate’ orders. We would do the same things here.”

Perhaps most chilling of all, though, was a staffer at Emily’s Women’s Center in the Bronx, who said they would directly ensure the baby did not survive by putting the baby in a “solution” if he or she survived an abortion. “The solution will make it stop,” the staffer said. “It’s not going to be moving around in the jar … that’s the whole purpose of the solution. It’ll automatically stop. It won’t be able to… not with the solution…. It won’t be able to breathe anymore.”

The Center for Disease Control reports that at least 143 children were born alive after abortions between 2003 and 2014, while acknowledging that the true number could be even higher. These are human beings who deserve protection, and currently, they do not have it. Politifact’s own “fact check” shows this, yet it still claims that the toothless laws in place are adequate, despite what the evidence shows.

People deserve to know the truth, and the truth is that there are inadequate protections in place for babies who survive abortions.

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