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Last January President Bush asked Congress to send him bans on partial-birth abortion and on cloning. Both bills have passed the House, but the more liberal Senate is holding up these protections of the unborn.

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Waiting for Bans on Partial-Birth Abortion and Cloning

Last January President Bush asked Congress to send him bans on partial-birth abortion and on cloning. Both bills have passed the House, but the more liberal Senate is holding up these protections of the unborn.

Does anyone remember this:

“By caring for children who need mentors, and for addicted men and women who need treatment, we are building a more welcoming society — a culture that values every life. And in this work we must not overlook the weakest among us. I ask you to protect infants at the very hour of their birth and end the practice of partial-birth abortion. And because no human life should be started or ended as the object of an experiment, I ask you to set a high standard for humanity, and pass a law against all human cloning.”

Those are the words of President Bush from his State of the Union Address on January 28, 2003.

If these issues are this important to a Republican President who has a Republican House and Senate, where are the partial-birth abortion and cloning bans? If these bills, as conservatives claim, are all about preserving innocent human life, shouldn’t they be at the top of the agenda for the GOP?

The Partial-Birth Abortion Ban Act easily passed both the House and the Senate earlier this year. In fact, the vote in the Senate showed a filibuster-proof majority in support of the ban. At the beginning of this month the House passed the final version (conference report) of the Partial-Birth Abortion Ban Act, but several liberal Senators, following the lead of Sen. Barbara Boxer (D.-Calif.), are holding it up. The truly tragic aspect of all of this is that Republicans have yet to force a vote on the bill — though now it appears that it could come up this week.

The Cloning Ban has great support among conservatives, and the House passed it handily. Where are the Senate Republicans? Currently, there are two competing cloning bans in the Senate. One bill, the “reproductive cloning ban” (a.k.a. “the clone-to-kill bill”), sponsored by Sen. Orrin Hatch (R.-Utah), claims to place a ban on human cloning but preserves embryonic stem-cell research. The second bill, sponsored by Sen. Sam Brownback (R.-Kan.), would place a complete ban on human cloning. Now the problem is that 14 senators, including 9 Republicans, are not sure where they stand on the issue. (For a related story, see “Cloning Ban Stalls in Senate”.)

The congressional GOP has a duty — which it needs to put into practice — to protect the unborn and send to President Bush the bans on partial-birth abortion and cloning ASAP.

The lives of innocent babies are at stake.

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