The United States Conference of Catholic Bishops applauded the Senate for passing the Unborn Victims of Violence Act, S. 1019, by a vote of 61-38 last week, and is now urging the President to swiftly sign the bill into law.
The bill, also known as "Laci and Conner's Law" in memory of Laci Peterson and her unborn child, was passed March 25. It recognizes an unborn child as a second victim in a violent federal crime against a pregnant woman. The Bush administration indicated its strong support for prompt enactment of the bill.
"We applaud the Senate for voting for justice for women and their children," said Cathy Cleaver Ruse, Esq., spokesperson for the U.S. Bishops' Secretariat for Pro-Life Activities. "No woman should ever be told she lost nothing when she loses her child to a brutal attacker," she said in the USCCB official statement.
The bill passed the House of Representatives three times; last Thursday’s action marked the first Senate vote on the bill.
The Senate voted down a substitute bill, supported by abortion advocates, that would have ignored the child as a second victim in violent federal crimes.
"We are grateful to the Senate for ignoring the offensive claims of the abortion lobby and its allies in Congress," Ruse said.