Senate Republicans approve “born-alive” legislation

Wisconsin State Capitol Dome

MADISON, Wis. (AP) — The state Senate approved a bill Tuesday that would make health care providers who let a child that survives an abortion die guilty of a felony.

The Republican-authored measure would require any health care provider present at the time of an abortion that results in a child born alive to provide the same level of care that any reasonable provider would give to any other child born alive. Violators would be guilty of a felony punishable by up to six years in prison.

The bill also would make intentionally causing the death of a child born alive as a result of an abortion a felony punishable by life in prison.

Wisconsin Ethics Commission records show multiple groups have registered against the bill, including the American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists, Planned Parenthood of Wisconsin and the Wisconsin Coalition Against Sexual Assault. The Wisconsin Catholic Conference, Wisconsin Family Action and Wisconsin Right to Life have registered in support.

The bill’s chief Senate sponsor, Roger Roth, said everyone should want a child born alive to receive health care and questioned how anyone could oppose the proposal. Democratic Sen. Kelda Roys called the bill garbage, saying doctors are obligated to save children born alive.

The Senate ultimately passed the bill 19-12. No Democrats voted for the measure. It goes next to the state Assembly.