Thursday, March 2, 2023


By Tim Rohr

In opposing Moylan, Leslie Travis, the governor's lawyer, argued that subsequent laws on abortion have resulted in the implied repeal of the 1990 ban, holding the motion to vacate moot. - Guam Daily Post, Mar. 2, 2023)

No media stories thus far have identified which "subsequent laws on abortion" "have resulted in the implied repeal of the 1990 ban." 

However, the Guam Supreme Court Order does:

The Governor is asking whether the Women’s Reproductive Health Information Act of 2012, the Partial-Birth Abortion Ban Act of 2009, and the enactment of 19 GCA §§ 4A101-102, 4A107, and 4A109 served as implied repeals of P.L. 20-134. (Links added.)

Note: 19 GCA §§ 4A101-102, 4A107, and 4A109 refer to Parental Consent for Abortion for minors. 

The governor's argument is that because these laws do not ban abortion but continue to allow it under certain circumstances then these laws "resulted in the implied repeal of the 1990 ban."

None of these three laws addressed the legality of abortion, which is why the governor relies on the word "implied." 

The Women's Reproductive Health Information Act (informed consent for abortion) and the afore-referenced sections of the law relative to Parental Consent for Abortion did not proscribe or limit abortion access but only required the distribution of information and normal medical consent. 

The Partial-Birth Abortion Ban sought only to ban a particularly heinous and gruesome abortion procedure which found its precedent in the U.S. Supreme Court case Gonzales v. Carhart, 127 S. Ct. 1610 (2007) as well as the Federal Partial-Birth Abortion Ban Act of 2003.

For the governor to hold that abortion cannot be outlawed in Guam pursuant to P.L. 20-134 because of subsequent laws would be the same as the Court in Dobbs saying "well we can't reverse Roe because the Federal Partial-Birth Abortion Ban Act of 2003, other than banning a particular procedure, still allowed for abortion generally."

The analogy is absurd and so is the governor's desperate grasping for a reason to keep killing babies - mostly CHamoru babies. 

Note: The Partial-Birth Abortion Ban Act of 2009, was the first legislation to address abortion in Guam since 1990. The Legislative Findings and Intent are worth revisiting. 

§91A102. Legislative Findings and Intent. I Liheslaturan Guahan finds that a moral, medical, and ethical consensus exists that the practice of performing a partial-birth abortion is a gruesome and inhumane procedure that is never medically necessary and should be prohibited. The passage by the 108th Congress with the President signing the federal Partial-Birth Abortion Ban Act of 2003 into law provides a legal direction for Guam to ban partial- birth abortions.

I Liheslaturan Guahan further finds that on March 18, 2007, the United States Supreme Court upheld this position in Gonzales v. Carhart, 127 S. Ct. 1610 (2007), ruling that the State may prohibit partial-birth abortions that do not include the maternal "health" exception. The language in this bill stems from and uses as its primary influence the language of the federal "Partial-Birth Abortion Ban Act of 2003, 18 U.S.C. §153I", upheld in Gonzales.

Partial-birth abortion poses serious risks to the long-term health of women. It is not an abortion procedure that is universally embraced by the mainstream medical community.

Partial-birth abortion poses serious risks to the health of a woman undergoing the procedure. Those risks include, among other things: an increase in a woman's risk of suffering from cervical incompetence, a result of cervical dilation making it difficult or impossible for a woman to successfully carry a subsequent pregnancy to term; an increased risk of uterine rupture, abruption, amniotic fluid embolus, and trauma to the uterus as a result of converting the child to a footling breech position, a procedure which, according to a leading obstetrics textbook, "there are very few, if any, indications for other than for delivery of a second twin"; and a risk of lacerations and secondary hemorrhaging due to the doctor blindly forcing a sharp instrument into the base of the unborn child's skull while he or she is lodged in the birth canal, an act which could result in severe bleeding and subsequent shock. As a result, at least thirty-one (31) States have enacted bans of "partial-birth" abortions, as did the 104th, 105th, 106th and 108th Congresses, and the President, upon signing of the "Partial-Birth Abortion Ban Act of 2003" into law.

There is no credible medical evidence that partial-birth abortions are safer than other abortion procedures. No controlled studies of partial-birth abortions have been conducted nor have any comparative studies been conducted to demonstrate its safety and efficacy compared to other abortion methods. Furthermore, there have been no articles published in peer-review journals that establish that partial-birth abortions are superior in any way to established abortion procedures.

In light of the overwhelming evidence, Guam has an interest in prohibiting partial-birth abortions. Both Roe v. Wade and Planned Parenthood v. Casev, 505 U.S. 833 (1992) recognized a governmental interest in protecting the life of a child during the delivery process. This interest arises during a partial-birth abortion because labor is induced and the birth process has begun. Partial-birth abortions kill a child that is mere inches away from becoming a "person" under Roe. Thus, the government has a heightened interest in protecting the life of the partially-born child.

The public's perception of the appropriate role of a physician during the delivery process is undermined by aborting a child in the manner that purposefully seeks to kill the child inches from "personhood and the resulting protections conferred upon the fully born child.

Partial-birth abortion is disturbingly similar to the killing of a newborn infant and blurs the line between infanticide and abortion. This legislation reinforces the line at birth between abortion and infanticide that the Supreme Court established in Roe v. Wade, 410 U.S. 113 (1973). This legislation draws a bright line that clearly distinguishes abortion and infanticide that preserves the integrity of the medical profession, and promotes respect for human life.

The  vast majority of babies killed during partial-birth abortions are alive up through the very end of the procedure. It is a medical fact that unborn infants subjected to partial-birth abortion can feel pain when subjected to painful stimuli. Furthermore, an unborn child's perception of pain is even more than that of newborn infants and older children.

I Liheslaturan Guahan, for these reasons, finds that partial-birth abortion is in fact unrecognized as a valid abortion procedure by the mainstream medical community; poses additional health risks to the mother; blurs the line between abortion and infanticide in the killing of a partially-born child just inches from birth; and confuses the role of the physician in childbirth and should, therefore, be banned.

The above graphic was used by The Esperansa Project in its testimony to the Legislature during the public hearing for the bill. What the graphic doesn't show is the child's shock when the physician stabs the child in the back of the skull, then tears a hole in the child's skull large enough to insert a vacuum tube to suck the child's brains out. 

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