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    House Passes Unborn Victims Bill

    (February 26, 2004) -- The House of Representatives has voted 254-163 to approve legislation that would make killing or harming a child in utero a federal crime.

    HR 1997, titled the "Unborn Victims of Violence Act of 2004"' or "Laci and Conner's Law" (named for Laci Rocha Peterson and her unborn child, Conner) seeks to amend the U.S. Code, and the Uniform Code of Military Justice, to protect unborn children from assault and murder.

    Congressman Dana Rohrabacher (R., HB-LB-PV) voted "yes." Congresswoman Juanita Millender-McDonald (D., LB-Carson) was recorded as "not voting."

    [We presume Congresswoman Millender-McDonald was in L.A. in connection with Sen. John Kerry's appearance in a presidential candidates debate on Feb. 26. As previously reported by, she is a co-chair of the Kerry for President National Steering Committee.]

    In other regional votes of interest, Congressmembers Loretta Sanchez, Linda Sanchez and Grace Napolitano all voted "no."

    47 Democrats joined 207 Republicans in voting "yes." 13 Republicans joined 149 Democrats in voting "no."

    To see the text of HR 1997, click here. The legislation now heads to the Senate.

    Prior to the vote, the House rejected (186 - 229) a substitute measure by Cong. Zoe Lofgren (D., San Jose) that sought to create a new federal crime for any violent or assaultive conduct against a pregnant woman that interrupts or terminates her pregnancy. The votes of Congressmembers Rohrabacher, Napolitano and the Sanchez sisters on the substitute were the reverse of their votes on the main measure. (Cong. Millender-McDonald recorded as "not voting.")

    Coverage via Reuters, click here.

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