Unborn Victims of Violence Act


Background: This measure (H.R. 2436, S. 1673) provides that an individual who injures or kills an unborn child during the commission of certain federal crimes will be guilty of a separate offense.

House: On July 1, 1999, Rep. Lindsey Graham (R-SC) introduced H.R. 2436; the measure had 94 cosponsors. On September 30, 1999, a perfecting amendment by Rep. Charles Canady (R-FL) was approved, 269-yes, 158-no, 7-not voting (Roll Call 463). Thereafter, Rep. Zoe Lofgren (D-CA) offered substituted language that would have redefined the offense as harm to the pregnant woman; that amendment was rejected, 201-yes, 224-no, 9-not voting (Roll Call 464). On September 30, 1999, H.R. 2436 was approved, 254-yes, 172-no, 8-not voting. (Roll Call 465)

Senate: On Oct. 1, 1999, the House-passed bill was received in the Senate, read twice, and referred to committee. On September 30, 1999, Sen. Mike DeWine (R-OH) introduced the Senate companion bill, S. 1673; this measure had 11 cosponsors. On Feb. 23, 2000, the Judiciary Committee held hearings. No further action was taken.

End-of-Year Summary: Passed by the House but not the Senate, the measure did not become law.