Some experts disagree with Democrat presidential candidate Hillary Clinton that late-term abortion is necessary in some cases to protect the mother’s health.
At the final presidential debate, debate moderator Chris Wallace asked Clinton how far a woman’s right should go as far as abortion is concerned. Wallace also noted that Clinton voted against the partial birth abortion ban when she was a senator and that she had said a fetus has no constitutional right.
“I strongly support Roe v. Wade which guarantees a constitutional right to a woman to make the most intimate, most difficult in many cases, decisions about her health care that one can imagine,” Clinton said.
She explained there are cases wherein at the end of pregnancy, women learn that their health is in danger if they carry to term. Clinton believes such cases necessitate late-term abortion.
“The kinds of cases that fall at the end of pregnancy are often the most heartbreaking, painful decisions for families to make. I have met with women who, toward the end of their pregnancy, get the worst news one could get that their health is in jeopardy if they continue to carry to term or that something terrible has happened or just been discovered about the pregnancy,” Clinton said.
“I do not think the United States government should be stepping in and making those most personal of decisions. So you can regulate if you are doing so with the life and health of the mother taken into account,” she added.
Her statement at the third debate drew a response from Dr. Lawrence K. Koning, an OB/GYN, who said no medical situation exists that necessitates late-term abortion to save the mother’s life.
"As an ob/gyn physician for 31 years there is no medical situation that requires aborting/killing the baby in the third trimester to ‘save the mother's life,’” Koning said on a Facebook post.
“Just deliver the baby by c/section and the baby has 95+% survival with readily available NICU care even at 28 weeks. C/section is quicker and safer than partial birth abortion for the mother,” he added.
According to Steve Schultz, founder of Breaking Christian News and The Elijah List, Koning posted the comment on his personal Facebook account. Koning was Schultz’s classmate at Christian Academy years ago.
Schultz was apparently “stunned” to hear Clinton’s remarks about late-term abortion. After the third debate, he saw Koning’s post and asked permission from him if it could be posted at the Breaking Christian News page. Koning readily gave his consent.
Another doctor, Dr. Elizabeth Johnson, examined a study entitled 'Who Seeks Abortion at or After 20 Weeks.' She found that the most common reasons women gave for late-term abortions were not having enough money for the procedure, difficulty in getting insurance coverage, difficulty in going to the termination clinic and not knowing where they can go for abortion.
“For many years, abortion-rights advocates have asserted that abortions after 20 weeks are performed because of maternal health complications or lethal fetal anomalies discovered late in pregnancy,” Johnson wrote in an article. “However, wider data from both the medical literature and late-term abortion providers indicates that most late-term procedures are not performed for these reasons.”