Rep. Andy Biggs, R-Ariz., chairman of the House Freedom Caucus, reintroduced three pro-life bills Thursday, a day after President Joe Biden was inaugurated the 46th president of the United States.
“The next four years of the Biden administration will bring out the worst abortion policies and edicts that our nation has experienced since the Roe v. Wade decision,” Biggs said in a statement provided to The Daily Signal.
He added that “the pro-life community will rise above these challenges to grow our movement and to bring about an end to abortion on-demand.”
The three bills affect the tax treatment of abortions, abortion providers’ hospital admitting privileges, and women’s health care.
“We reflect on these innocent human beings and their God-given potentials extinguished by cruel instruments or medication,” says Biggs. “We mourn with the families who have experienced great regret over their abortions. We pray for healing for all of the mothers who have chosen the path of abortion for their little ones.”
The first bill, originally introduced May 15, 2019, and dubbed the Abortion Is Not Health Care Act, would terminate the Internal Revenue Service’s treatment of out-of-pocket abortion costs as a medical expense.
Co-sponsors for the Abortion Is Not Health Care Act include Republicans Jeff Duncan of South Carolina, Ralph Norman of South Carolina, Matt Gaetz of Florida, Alex Mooney of West Virginia, Ted Budd of North Carolina, Mike Kelly of Pennsylvania, Bob Gibbs of Ohio, David Rouzer of North Carolina, Rick Allen of Georgia, and Chip Roy of Texas.
The second bill, the Pregnant Women Health and Safety Act, covered by The Daily Signal last year, would require that all abortion providers have admitting privileges at a local hospital and comply with basic safety standards.
Introduced Jan. 21, 2020, the legislation requires that a doctor performing an abortion “have admitting privileges at a hospital located within 15 miles from the principal medical office of the physician and the location in which the abortion is being performed.”
On its website, Planned Parenthood has called hospital admitting privilege requirements “unfair” and “medically unnecessary.”
The bill would also require the physician to inform the woman undergoing the abortion where the hospital is located so she can access follow-up care in the event of complications.
Conviction for failure to do so by the doctor performing the abortion could result in fines and prison time.
The third bill, per Biggs’ office, is a “resolution recognizing the importance of access to comprehensive, high-quality, life-affirming medical care for women of all ages.”
Introduced originally on Jan. 3, 2019, it “recognizes the high standards established by Pro Women’s Healthcare Centers consortium as standards worth implementing nationwide.”
It identified Pro Women’s Healthcare Centers, which include a dozen locations across the country, as a collection of health care centers that “serves as an example of the high-quality, comprehensive, life-affirming care that women deserve.”
The resolution notes that the center’s services include “sexually transmitted disease testing and treatment, breast exams, pregnancy testing, prenatal and pregnancy care, miscarriage support, fertility awareness instruction, infertility consultation, and onsite or nearby, direct referrals for material, emotional, practical, and spiritual resources.”
Biggs’ office said it expects the bills to be referred to House committees such as the Ways and Means Committee, the Energy and Commerce Committee, and the Judiciary Committee.
Biggs also said, “We resolve to end the practice of abortion and to value all innocent life as sacred,” adding:
Since the contemptible Roe v. Wade decision, Americans have made great strides across the nation to protect the lives of the unborn. I am pleased to represent one of the most pro-life states in the union, Arizona, and to have had the privilege of fighting for life for decades. To this end, I have reintroduced three pieces of pro-life legislation to reaffirm our values and to ensure that mothers and their unborn children are protected.
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