The United States was built on the right to life. Our founding fathers wrote in the Declaration of Independence that all men are created equal and that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable rights: the Right to Life, Liberty, and the pursuit of Happiness.

Every person, born or unborn, is entitled to these God-given rights. Our government was created to secure these rights—not take them away.

It is our job to ensure equal protection of these rights for all persons, without exception.

Unfortunately, the Roe v. Wade Supreme Court decision has robbed over 50 million innocent babies of their right to life since its ruling in 1973.

With the 45th anniversary of the Roe v. Wade Supreme Court decision approaching, Congress is taking up legislation to give all babies born alive a fighting chance at their right to life.

The Born Alive Abortion Survivor’s Protection Act, H.R. 4712, would ensure that any child born during an attempted abortion receives all necessary medical care and legal protections.

It protects the mother from being prosecuted and enforces criminal penalties for those who harm babies born alive or let them die. These babies deserve the same right to life that both you and I had. This commonsense bill ensures abortion survivors have that right.

This month, hundreds of thousands of Americans traveled to Washington to take part in the annual March for Life. People from all across the country come to our nation’s capital to be the voice for the voiceless.

They have traveled to tell lawmakers in person that every unborn baby deserves the right to life. I stand with those who have come to march and I stand firm in my conviction that life begins in the womb.

As soon as you hear the heartbeat of a baby, you know that child is an innocent human being with worth.

I will always defend the rights of these unborn children. We must continue to defend those who cannot defend themselves and ensure every human is given their right to life.

Rep. Markwayne Mullin (R-Okla.) represents the second district in the U.S. House of Representatives. He can be reached through http://mullin.house.gov, and at 3109 Azalea Park Drive, Muskogee, OK, 74401, 918-687-2533 or 202-225-2701