1 of 4 | Senator Lindsey Graham, a Republican from South Carolina, introduced legislation to ban abortion after 15 weeks on Tuesday. Photo by Ting Shen/UPI | License Photo
Sept. 13 (UPI) -- South Carolina Republican Senator Lindsey Graham introduced legislation on Tuesday that would ban abortion after 15 weeks nationwide, with some exceptions.
"I think we should have a law at the federal level that would say, after 15 weeks, no abortion on demand except in cases of rape, incest or to save the life of the mother," Graham said at a news conference, according to The Washington Post. "And that should be where America is at."
While Graham's bill is unlikely to receive a vote in the Democratic-controlled Senate, Graham said that if Republicans took back the House and Senate in the midterm elections, there would be a vote on his bill.
"Abortion is a contentious issue," Graham said. "Abortion is not banned in America. It is left up to elected officials in America to define the issue."
The White House criticized the bill as out of step with the views of most Americans.
"President Biden and congressional Democrats are committed to restoring the protections of Roe vs. Wade in the face of continued radical steps by elected Republicans to put personal health care decisions in the hands of politicians instead of women and their doctors, threatening women's health and lives," White House press secretary Karine Jean-Pierre said in a statement.
The U.S. Supreme Court in June overturned Roe vs. Wade in June, eliminating the federally protected right to abortion procedures, causing multiple states to move quickly to criminalize it.
Graham's bill comes as even some Republican states have had trouble issuing more abortion restrictions. Last month Kansas voters overwhelmingly voted in favor of a ballot measure that would protect abortion rights. And earlier this month South Carolina Republicans were unable to reach a consensus on their near-total abortion ban.
"I'm not going to let that happen," South Carolina state Republican Sen. Tom Davis said after taking to the floor to briefly filibuster the proposed ban.