The GOP-controlled House failed Thursday to pass a measure that would have banned abortions based on a baby's gender.
The Prenatal Nondiscrimination Act (PRENDA) needed a two-thirds majority under a special rule to pass.
Pro-life lawmakers and groups blasted President Obama for opposing the ban.
White House officials said "the administration opposes gender discrimination in all forms," but "that government should not intrude in medical decisions or private family matters."
That statement led Rep. Chris Smith, R-N,J., to call Obama the most pro-abortion president in history.
"It is inconceivable to me, and I hope it is to you and every American, that our Nobel Prize-winning president can refuse to protect little girls from the violence of sex-selection abortions," Smith said.
Rep. Mike Kelly, R-Pa., shared his colleague's sentiments.
"In a country that will fight a war anywhere to protect civil liberties, and civil rights and humanity, to be standing here today and to have to be discussing legislation to protect the rights of unborn little girls, are you kidding me?" Kelly said.
But opponents of PRENDA chose not to focus on unborn girls, saying instead the bill was an attack on women's reproductive rights.