WASHINGTON (April 26, 2001) -- Cathleen Cleaver, director of planning and information at the Secretariat for
Pro-Life Activities of the National Conference of Catholic Bishops, applauded the overwhelming 252-172 House vote today to pass the Unborn Victims of Violence Act (H.R. 503). The bill amends federal criminal laws so they protect unborn children as well as their mothers against violent acts by third parties.
"We are pleased with the result of the House vote on the Unborn Victims of Violence Act," Ms. Cleaver said. "The vote of 252 to 172 sends a powerful message: when a violent assault is committed against a pregnant woman and her baby, under federal law judgment and punishment will be meted out for violent acts against two victims, not one. The House has taken an important first step to amend federal criminal laws against violence so they do not recognize some victims and ignore others."
Proponents of abortion promoted a substitute amendment authored by Rep. Zoe Lofgren (D-CA) that would remove the unborn child as a potential victim of a violent crime. That amendment was soundly defeated.
"It is amazing that abortion advocates acknowledge in public debate that the unborn child is a living human being, but are unwilling to protect that living human being from a violent predator's attack," Ms. Cleaver stated.