Donald Trump Blasts Democrats as 'Born Alive' Abortion Bill Fails in Senate: 'They Don't Mind Executing Babies After Birth'

Donald Trump
President Donald Trump speaks during the 2019 White House business session with governors at the White House on February 25. The president tweeted his frustration over an abortion bill that failed to pass in the U.S. Senate.  MANDEL NGAN/AFP/Getty Images

As is often the case, President Donald Trump expressed his frustration on Twitter on Monday, this time over an abortion bill that failed to pass in the U.S. Senate.

Trump railed against Democrats in two tweets, saying they didn't mind killing babies after birth.

"Senate Democrats just voted against legislation to prevent the killing of newborn infant children. The Democrat position on abortion is now so extreme that they don't mind executing babies AFTER birth," Trump tweeted. "This will be remembered as one of the most shocking votes in the history of Congress. If there is one thing we should all agree on, it's protecting the lives of innocent babies."

The bill, known as the Born-Alive Abortion Survivors Protection Act, sought to penalize a doctor who failed to give medical treatment to an infant who survived a failed abortion. It fell short of a needed 60 votes, with a 53-44 result.

Only three Democratic senators, Joe Manchin of West Virginia, Doug Jones of Alabama and Bob Casey Jr. of Pennsylvania voted in favor of the bill, as did all Republicans.

The senators currently competing for the 2020 presidential nomination—Kirsten Gillibrand of New York, Cory Booker of New Jersey, Kamala Harris of California, Amy Klobuchar of Minnesota, Elizabeth Warren of Massachusetts and Bernie Sanders of Vermont—all voted against the bill.

Senator Ben Sasse, a Nebraska Republican, introduced the bill after the outrage that followed Virginia Governor Ralph Northam's comments on Virginia House Bill 2491 in a radio interview. The House bill looked to remove the words "substantially and irredeemably" from Virginia's current abortion law when it came to determining the risk faced by a woman to continue a pregnancy. Under the state's current law, third-term abortions are allowed, even up until the start of labor.

The bill's sponsor, Kathy Tran, who serves in the Virginai House of Delegates, said during a committee hearing that the bill would allow for an abortion even if the woman was in labor, sparking outrage from anti-abortion rights groups and many Republicans.

Tran later said she misspoke. "I should have said: 'Clearly, no, because infanticide is not allowed in Virginia, and what would have happened in that moment would be a live birth," she told The Washington Post.

In his January 30 radio interview, Northam was asked about Tran's initial answer and to explain her words.

"When we talk about third-trimester abortions, it's done in cases where there may be severe deformities. There may be a fetus that's nonviable," Northam said. "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."

Anti-abortion rights groups and some conservatives took Northam's comments, along with Tran's, to be an endorsement of infanticide, though a spokesperson later clarified that the governor had been speaking of "the tragic and extremely rare case" of a woman going into labor "with a nonviable pregnancy or severe fetal abnormalities."

Nearly two weeks later, during a rally in El Paso, Texas, Trump referred to Northam's comments, and said Democrats were pushing "extreme, late-term abortion."

"Democrats are pushing extreme, late-term abortion," Trump said to boos from the crowd. "Allowing children to be ripped from their mother's womb, right up until the moment of birth. What's that all about?

"So in Virginia, the governor...the governor stated that he would even allow a newborn baby to come out into the world, and wrap the baby, and make the baby comfortable, and then talk to the mother and talk to the father and then execute the baby," Trump continued.

Before Monday's vote, Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell told other lawmakers that the bill was a "straightforward piece of legislation to protect newborn babies," The Post reported.

McConnell added that Democrats "seem to be suggesting that newborn babies' right to life may be contingent on the circumstances surrounding their birth.

"So my colleagues across the aisle need to decide where they'll take their cues on these moral questions. On the one hand, there are a few extreme voices who decided some newborn lives are more disposable than others. On the other side is the entire rest of the country," McConnell said.

The graphic below, provided by Statista, illustrates the declining rate of legal abortions in the U.S. since 1984.

The declining rate of legal abortions in the U.S. since 1984. Statista

This article was updated to include an infographic.

Donald Trump Blasts Democrats as 'Born Alive' Abortion Bill Fails in Senate: 'They Don't Mind Executing Babies After Birth' | U.S.