Nebraska Republican Sen. Ben Sasse blasted Virginia Democratic Gov. Ralph Northam for a second time Thursday after Northam tried to walk back statements condoning infanticide by defending his own character instead.
“What’s shameful is that you’re too cowardly to say point blank that it’s wrong to leave babies to die after birth,” Sasse told The National Review in a statement Thursday, calling out Northam for refusing, still, to repudiate statements he made Wednesday morning regarding abortion until birth and infanticide.
“If a mother is in labor, I can tell you exactly what would happen. The infant would be delivered. The infant would be kept comfortable. The infant would be resuscitated if that’s what the mother and the family desired, and then a discussion would ensue between the physicians and the mother,” Northam said in a WTOP interview.
The governor received an onslaught of criticism after the interview aired. Northam responded to the media storm by tweeting in defense of his character Wednesday night. The tweet does not address his position on abortion until birth and infanticide.
I have devoted my life to caring for children and any insinuation otherwise is shameful and disgusting.
— Governor Ralph Northam (@VAGovernor73) January 31, 2019
Imagine okaying infanticide of disabled infants and then acting like *you're* the victim https://t.co/i1633NH5fu
— Peter J. Hasson on paternity leave (@peterjhasson) January 31, 2019
“[B]ecause you’re terrified of an extremist pro-abortion lobby that now defends even infanticide, you’re still ducking,” Sasse also said of Northam, according to the Review.
Roe v. Wade allows women to have an abortion up to the point of fetal “viability.” Physicians generally point to between 22 and 24 weeks as the point at which a newborn baby can survive outside the womb.
Northam’s communications team provided The Daily Caller News Foundation with a statement Wednesday following the governor’s morning interview. “No woman seeks a third trimester abortion except in the case of tragic or difficult circumstances … and the governor’s comments were limited to the actions physicians would take in the event that a woman in those circumstances went into labor,” communication director Ofirah Yheskel told TheDNCF in an email.
“Attempts to extrapolate these comments otherwise is in bad faith and underscores exactly why the governor believes physicians and women, not legislators, should make these difficult and deeply personal medical decisions,” Yheskel said.
Sasse first slammed Northam on Wednesday, telling the governor that he shouldn’t serve in government if he supports leaving babies to die after they’ve been born.
Virginia is considering HB 2491 which would repeal the state’s current restrictions on late-term abortions. The bill would allow a doctor to perform an abortion when a woman is dilating, meaning she is about to give birth.
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