The campaign of Democratic presidential candidate Sen. Barack Obama has responded to an ad which features abortion survivor Gianna Jessen asking Obama to support protecting those infants who survive abortions. In its own ad, the Obama campaign calls the Jessen ad “a despicable lie” and claims it takes out of context Obama’s repeated votes against the Illinois Born Alive Infants Protection Act.
The new advertisement also implies that the original advertisement, which was produced by the 527 organization BornAliveTruth.org, is connected to the McCain campaign.
In the Obama advertisement, the narrator says:
“John McCain’s Attacks: ‘the sleaziest ads ever,’ ‘truly vile’
“Now, votes taken out of context accusing Obama of letting infants die?
“It’s a despicable lie.
“Even the bill’s Republican sponsor said it’s untrue.
“Obama’s always supported medical care to protect infants.
“McCain? He’s running on a platform to ban abortion, even in cases of rape and incest.
“That’s John McCain.”
The advertisement begins with a brief appearance of Obama, who says “I’m Barack Obama and I approve this message.”
The BornAliveTruth.org advertisement features Gianna Jessen, was the victim of an attempted saline solution abortion which was performed on her then-17-year-old mother in the third trimester of Jessen’s gestation. The saline solution burned Jessen’s body for eighteen hours until she was delivered at a Los Angeles County abortion clinic at a weight of 2 lbs.
Jessen suffers cerebral palsy as a result of the abortion attempt.
In the original advertisement, she cited Barack Obama’s opposition to the Born Alive Infants Protection Act in the Illinois state senate.
She charged: “if Barack Obama had his way, I wouldn’t be here. Four times, Barack Obama voted to oppose a law to protect babies left to die after a failed abortion. Senator Obama, please support born alive infant protections. I’m living proof these babies have a right to live.”
In a response to the new Obama campaign ad, Jessen wrote on BornAliveTruth.org:
“Mr. Obama is clearly blinded by political ambition given his attack on me this week. All I asked of him was to do the right thing: support medical care and protection for babies who survive abortion – as I did 31 years ago.
“He voted against such protection and care four times even though the U.S. Senate voted 98-0 in favor of a bill identical to the one Obama opposed. In the words of his own false and misleading ad, his position is downright vile.
“Mr. Obama said at the recent Saddleback Forum that the question of when babies should get human rights was above his pay grade. Such vacillation and cowardice in public policy almost left me to die and no one should have to go through what I went through.”
Jill Stanek, a nurse who pushed for BAIPA after discovering infants who survived abortions at an Illinois hospital were being left to die in a soiled utility room, also replied to the Obama campaign’s attack ad.
“It is despicable, repulsive and beneath contempt that Barack Obama would attack Gianna Jessen,” Stanek said in a statement on BornAliveTruth.org. “She is a courageous abortion survivor and living miracle who would not be with us today if Obama's policies had been in place when she was born.”
She charged that Obama “continues to mislead the American people on this issue” and said he voted four times in the Illinois state senate against “medical care and protection for babies who survive abortions.”
“Mr. Obama needs to come forward and tell the American people that he understands people like Gianna Jessen, and that he will support and enforce Born Alive Infant protections -- that these are living, breathing human beings who have come into our world and deserve protection in the law and should receive medical care at health care facilities,” Stanek continued.
“These babies have the same rights as the rest of us.”