Republican Senator Lindsey Graham has introduced a bill to ban abortion nationally after fifteen weeks of pregnancy.
The move follows the Supreme Court’s decision to overturn Roe v. Wade in June, sending abortion regulations back to state legislatures.
Graham says his legislation, introduced Tuesday, would align abortion regulations in America with other developed countries — and help Republicans running in the midterm elections.
“I can assure that a vast majority of Americans do not support abortion on demand up to delivery,” Graham told Fox News in a statement.
“This bill puts us in line with the rest of the world, so when you’re on the campaign trail you have a chance to talk about what you’re for,” he added.
His move comes just eight weeks ahead of November’s midterm elections. Some Republican senators have distanced themselves from Graham’s move.
Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnel said most members would prefer abortion is dealt with at the state level.
According to Blaze News, the proposed bill contains exceptions for rape, incest, and medical emergencies that threaten the mother’s life. It would impose a criminal penalty of up to five years for physicians who perform abortions. The bill explicitly prohibits women who seek an abortion from being prosecuted.
Graham has introduced legislation to prohibit abortions after 20 weeks in the past, but those bills never found enough support in the Senate to overcome a filibuster. He said this effort would likely fail to meet the 60-vote threshold required and may not even receive a vote as long as Democrats control the Senate majority.
White House press secretary Karine Jean-Pierre said Tuesday the bill is wildly out of step “with what Americans believe.”
Democratic House Speaker Nancy Pelosi called Graham’s bill “extreme.”
An AP-NORC poll from July found that most Americans disapproved of the Supreme Court’s decision and want abortion legal in the first trimester — but also that they favour some abortion restrictions as the baby develops.