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U.S. Sen. Jon Tester presents himself as a champion of Montana families and a voice of moderation in Congress, paying lip service to bipartisanship and compromise. He puts on a good show — but Tester is an extremist who supports abortion on demand up until birth, and he should be worried about the political consequences.

Last month the U.S. Senate had a chance to put an end to a practice so barbaric, most Americans are shocked to find out it’s legal. The Pain-Capable Unborn Child Protection Act, or “Micah’s Law,” would protect unborn children from late-term abortion after five months of pregnancy, a point by which science shows they can feel pain. It would save 12,000 to 18,000 lives each year.

The cruelty of abortions after five months can hardly be overstated. WebMD tells us the developing baby’s “eyelids, eyebrows, eyelashes, nails, and hair are formed… Your baby can even suck his or her thumb, yawn, stretch, and make faces.” Doctors perform astounding surgeries right in the womb, using anesthesia as standard procedure. Preemies born at this age increasingly have a fighting chance of surviving and thriving with proper care. Just ask the family of Micah Pickering, who once was a sickly baby battling for life in intensive care and now is a healthy, happy little boy.

One recent study showed that 5-month-old unborn babies kick with 6.5 pounds of force. But abortionists describe a different force — the force it takes to tear them apart in the womb with surgical implements. In the words of one former Planned Parenthood medical director, “Oh, I have to hit the gym for this!” Sometimes, she explains, the abortion doesn’t kill them and she has to “worry about my staff and people’s feelings about it coming out looking like a baby.”

No wonder only seven nations in the world — including North Korea and China, two of the most notorious human rights violators — allow abortion on demand this late in pregnancy. The United States, with its permissive laws, falls in this shameful minority. Thankfully, 20 states have already enacted versions of this bill, and momentum is growing.

This is welcome change, but since the Senate failed to pass the bill, different states still have totally different standards on basic human decency. Unfortunately, when Montana’s Legislature passed its own version, Tester’s fellow extremist Gov. Steve Bullock struck it down. We need national legislation to protect these vulnerable children.

Doing what’s right and doing what’s popular don’t always coincide as easily as they do in this case; 63 percent of Montana voters support the Pain-Capable Unborn Child Protection Act and 59 percent said they would be less likely to support Senator Tester if he voted to allow late-term abortion. Voter support for the legislation is especially high among millennials (78 percent), African-Americans (70 percent) and Hispanics (57 percent). Even as many as 51 percent of Democrats support limiting abortion after five months.

Tester, however, thinks it’s a waste of time to protect thousands of babies from an excruciating death. Contrast that with U.S. Sen. Steve Daines, who spoke eloquently on the Senate floor, saying, “Our ears may be deaf to their cries physically, but we don’t have to live in ignorance — not when research, not when the science, not when common sense shows that these unborn children can feel pain.”

Senator Tester chose ignorance and aligned himself with the radical abortion lobby. The guy who boasts of “holding himself accountable to the highest standards possible” will soon be held accountable by the voters. Tester is stunningly out of touch with Montana values and his days in office are numbered.

Jeff Laszloffy is president of the Montana Family Foundation and former speaker pro tempore of the Montana House of Representatives. Marjorie Dannenfelser is president of the national anti-abortion group Susan B. Anthony List.

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