This should end the issue for even nominal Catholics and long-ago Evangelicals. This is Obama defending his vote to deny newly-born babies care because their mothers had hoped to abort them. (And if this audio exists from the Illinois Senate floor, what more will follow?)
April 4, 2002Senator Obama: So-and again, I’m-I’m not going to prolong this, but I just want to be clear because I think this was the source of the objections of the Medical Society. As I understand it, this puts the burden on the attending physician who has determined, since they were performing this procedure, that, in fact, this is a nonviable fetus; that if that fetus, or child-however you want to describe it-is now outside the mother’s womb and the doctor continues to think that it’s nonviable but there’s, let’s say, movement or some indication that, in fact, they’re not just coming out limp and dead, that, in fact, they would then have to call a second physician to monitor and check off and make sure that this is not a live child that could be saved. Is that correct?[# More #]
Senator O’Malley: In-in the first instance, obviously the physician that is performing this procedure would make the determination. The second situation is where the child is actually born and is alive, and there’s an assessment-an independent assessment of viability by-by-by another physician at the soonest practical date-or, time.
Senator Obama: Let me just go to the bill, very quickly. Essentially, I think, as-as this emerged during debate and during committee, the only plausible rationale, to my mind, for this legislation would be if you had a suspicion that a doctor, the attending physician, who has made an assessment that this is a nonviable fetus and that, let’s say for the purpose of the mother’s health, is being-that-that labor is being induced, that that physician (a) is going to make the wrong assessment and (b) if the physician discovered, after the labor had been induced, that, in fact, he made an error, or she made an error, and in fact, that this was not a nonviable fetus but, in fact, a live child, that that physician, of his own accord or her own accord, would not try to exercise the sort of medical measures and practices that would be involved in saving that child. Now, if-if you think that there are possibilities that doctors would not do that, than maybe this bill makes sense, but I-I suspect and my impression is, is that the Medical Society suspects as well that doctors feel that they would be under that obligation, that they would already be making these determinations and that, essentially, adding a-an additional doctor who then has to be called in an emergency situation to come in and make these assessments is really designed simply to burden the original decision of the woman and the physician to induce labor and perform an abortion. Now, if that’s the case-and-and I know that some of us feel very strongly one way or another on that issue-that’s fine, but I think it’s important to understand that this issue is about abortion and not live births. Because if these are children who are being born alive, I, at least, have confidence that a doctor who is in that room is going to try to make sure that they’re looked after. Thank you, Mr. President.