The House of Representatives will consider a bill that would prevent abortions after 20 weeks of pregnancy.
At a meeting Wednesday, House Majority Leader Eric Cantor, R-Va., disclosed that he will bring the bill to the House floor.
As originally introduced by author Rep. Trent Franks, R-Ariz., the Pain Capable Unborn Child Protection Act would have applied only to the District of Columbia.
But Franks expanded the scope of the bill Tuesday to cover the entire nation.
Supporters say there is scientific evidence a fetus can feel pain after 20 weeks of gestation. They also say the bill is timely in light of the conviction of abortion doctor Kermit Gosnell and news reports of similar gruesome late-term abortion providers around the country.
“The case of Kermit Gosnell shocked the sensibilities of millions of Americans,” Franks told the Arizona Capitol Times.
“However, the crushing fact is that abortions just like the one caused by Kermit Gosnell have been happening hundreds of times every single day for decades in America,” he added.
The House Judiciary Subcommittee on the Constitution and Civil Justice approved the bill Tuesday along party lines by a vote of 6 to 4.
Subcommittee member Rep. Jerrold Nadler, D-N.Y., said the bill is evidence of the Republicans’ so-called “war on women.”
However, Franks said Nadler’s statement overlooks “the fact that roughly half of these babies that are so tortuously killed each day are just little tiny women.”