Did Virginia’s Governor Just Endorse Infanticide?

On Wednesday, Gov. Ralph Northam (D-Va.) appeared to endorse legalizing infanticide — the killing of a baby outside the womb — in cases of a failed abortion. Northam responded to questions about the REPEAL Act (H.B. 2491), which Delegate Kathy Tran (D-Springfield) testified would allow abortion even during labor.

"When we talk about third-trimester abortions, these are done with the consent of — obviously — the mother, with the consent of the physicians — more than one physician, by the way. And it's done in cases where there may be severe deformities, there may be a fetus that's non-viable," Northam said.

"If a mother is in labor, I can tell you exactly what would happen, the infant would be delivered," the governor added. "The infant would be kept comfortable. The infant would be resuscitated if that’s what the mother and the family desired, and then a discussion would ensue between the physicians & mother."

Did you catch that? Virginia's governor said that if a baby is born alive despite the efforts of the doctor to kill the baby in an abortion, the infant would "be resuscitated" only "if that's what the mother and the family desired." In other words, a baby who survives an attempted abortion should be considered dead, so that caring for the baby would be considered "resuscitation."

Under this logic, abortion doctors should merely give babies born alive "palliative care" intended to comfort the baby as he or she dies — as Northam said, "the infant would be kept comfortable." Even healthy babies need warmth and nourishment after birth, so giving them palliative care instead of life-saving care is effectively a sentence of death.