New Jersey's 26th Legislative District

Senator Joe Pennacchio

Senator Joe Pennacchio

Pennacchio: Preventing Animal Cruelty Is Important, So Is Preventing Cruel Treatment of Unborn Children

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Calls for Legislature to Apply Same Compassion to People That’s Applied to Pets

With planned Senate action on yet another bill that would further bolster the state’s already extensive animal cruelty statutes, Senator Joe Pennacchio (R-26) again blasted the Legislature’s continued inaction on legislation that would protect unborn children from the cruel and excruciating pain caused by abortion.

Sen. Joe Pennacchio speaking at a New Jersey State House press conference on S-2026, the NJ Pain Capable Unborn Child Protection Act, on December 5, 2016. (

“Preventing animal cruelty is important, but so is preventing the cruel treatment of unborn children,” said Pennacchio. “The Legislature’s continued inaction on S-2026 sends the message that we care more about animals than people. It’s time to re-balance our priorities, and we can start by passing the NJ Pain Capable Unborn Child Protection Act.”

Senator Pennacchio (R-Essex, Morris, Passaic) is the sponsor of the NJ Pain Capable Unborn Child Protection Act, which would prohibit abortion after 20 weeks gestation. S-2026 includes exceptions for rape, incest and when the life of the mother is at risk. Medical studies have shown unborn children can feel pain in the womb at least by 20 weeks, if not before.

“As someone who sat in the NJ courtrooms during the NJ Partial Birth Abortion trial, the two administrative law proceedings against NJ Steven Brigham, and the Philadelphia Kermit Gosnell trial, I heard first-hand testimony from the abortionists themselves the gruesome and barbaric methods used to kill babies,” Marie Tasy, Executive Director of New Jersey Right to Life said. “In listening to the testimony and their descriptions, it was very clear that these babies felt excruciating pain during these truly horrific acts which violently and cruelly took their lives and shattered their dignity.”

“We’ve passed countless bills to prevent household pets from the pain of being abused, mistreated or hurt, but we haven’t done a single thing to protect unborn children who are also capable of feeling pain and suffering,” added Pennacchio. “We hear lots of talk about ‘compassion’ from the other side of the aisle when it comes to protecting circus elephants or banning the declawing of cats, and today we are addressing the tethering of dogs. Is the pain felt by a dog or cat more important than that felt by a child in his mother’s womb during these late term abortions?”

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