Trump Criticizes Illinois Bill That Would Allow Abortion up Until Birth

By Zachary Stieber

An Illinois bill that was recently passed by the state House of Representatives and is expected to pass the state Senate and be signed by the Democratic governor was criticized by President Donald Trump as extreme.

Trump on May 30 shared a story about the bill’s passage, writing: “The Democrat Party is unhinged! Their radical position on abortion is horrible!”

Trump shared a story posted on Townhall, a conservative blog, that was highly critical of the bill.

The bill, the Reproductive Health Act, would remove the Illinois Abortion Law, which was passed in 1975, and allow abortion up until birth, making the state one of the most pro-abortion in the country.

According to a synopsis of the bill on the House’s website, the act “provides that every individual has a fundamental right to make autonomous decisions about one’s own reproductive health” and “provides that every individual who becomes pregnant has a fundamental right to continue the pregnancy and give birth or to have an abortion, and to make autonomous decisions about how to exercise that right.”

“A fertilized egg, embryo, or fetus does not have independent rights under the law, of this State,” it stated.

The legislation is being pushed despite widespread opposition to late-term abortion, or those happening in the third-term. Only 13 percent of respondents to a poll earlier this year said that abortion should be allowed at any time; similar results were seen in a Gallup poll last year. The view has gone largely unchanged for decades.

The Thomas More Society, which opposes the bill, noted in a legal assessment that the measure includes no acknowledgment that unborn children feel pain and can survive outside the womb as early as 23 weeks.

In an illustration photo, a doctor performs an ultrasound on a pregnant woman during her visit to a gynecologist. (Jennifer Jacobs/AFP/Getty Images)

According to the assessment, the bill would allow abortions for any reason up until the moment of birth, allow non-physicians, such as nurses, to perform abortions, and require health insurance companies to include coverage for all abortions.

The bill has “a definition of ‘viability’ that expressly excludes legal protection for many babies who now live and thrive when born premature—they would have zero legal rights or protections under the measure,” Peter Breen, former state representative and the group’s senior counsel, said in a statement.

“These preemie babies, who can feel pain, are expressly allowed to be aborted, without any provision for anesthesia or other comfort as they are dismembered. And the amendment adds a definition of ‘health’ that guts any protection for any baby so that—when challenged at the committee hearing, the ACLU’s representative couldn’t identify even one single abortion that would be prohibited if this bill becomes law.”

The bill has faced opposition from Illinois Republicans. State Rep. Avery Bounce, who is pregnant, cried as she spoke on the House floor prior to the vote.

“This bill will mean that if a baby requires extraordinary medical measures after they’re born, doctors could determine up to the 40th week of pregnancy that that baby was never viable,” Bourne said.

“This bill means that if the baby is viable, a doctor can determine that the post-viable abortion can still take place based on a number of factors that include familial health and the age of the woman.”

She added, “This bill will mean that for a woman at my stage in pregnancy, where the baby responds to his dad’s voice as he reads him books at night, the woman could go to the facility—the baby is perfectly healthy—but if that woman says based on my familial health, this is medically necessary, that is allowed.”