What: All Issues : Family Planning : Abortion : H.R. 1997. Fetal Protection/Vote on Final Passage of a Bill Which Would Increase Penalties for Crimes Against Pregnant Women and Grant Fetuses Legal Rights Independent of Mothers.
 Who: All Members
[POW!]
 

To find out how your Members of Congress voted on this bill, use the form on the right.

H.R. 1997. Fetal Protection/Vote on Final Passage of a Bill Which Would Increase Penalties for Crimes Against Pregnant Women and Grant Fetuses Legal Rights Independent of Mothers.
house Roll Call 31     Feb 26, 2004
Y = Conservative
N = Progressive
Winning Side:
Conservative

The subject of this vote was final passage of a bill-nicknamed Laci and Connor's law after the violent death of Laci Peterson and her unborn child Connor-that would make it a federal crime to injure or kill a fetus during the commission of a crime against a pregnant woman. The measure would establish criminal penalties equal to those that would apply if the injury or death occurred to the pregnant woman. While most lawmakers agree that crimes against pregnant women should carry extra punishments, Conservatives and Progressives had different views about how federal law should treat fetuses. In the view of Conservatives, federal law should recognize fetuses as distinct legal entities. Crimes against pregnant women, they argue, should result in two identical criminal charges. While Progressives supported increasing the penalties for crimes against pregnant women, they opposed granting fetuses legal rights independent of the mother. Putting the legal rights of fetuses on par with those of mothers, Progressives argued, could be used as a legal weapon to undermine abortion rights codified in the Supreme Court's ruling in Roe v. Wade. Despite the objections raised by Progressives, the fetal protection law was adopted on a vote of 254-163 and the measure was sent to the Senate for consideration.

Issue Areas:

Find your Member of
Congress' votes

Select by Name