Funding Ban; "Protect Life Act" Introduced in Congress
Part One of Three
Good evening and thanks
for reading TN&V. Part Two today examines the back-handed
pro-abortion admission that women don't have to support killing
unborn babies to be "feminists."
Part Three discusses the latest
example of resistance to ObamaCare. At National Right to Life
News Today (www.nationalrighttolifenews.org),
there is a wonderful piece by Wesley Smith on the New York
Times' maddeningly incoherent position on rationing and two
wonderful short pieces by Dr. David Prentice. Please send your
comments on Today's News & Views and National Right to Life News
email@example.com. If you like, join those who are
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Editor's note. The
following is excerpted from "Obama Administration and
Congressional Democratic Leaders Push Pro-Abortion Agenda, But
NRLC and Allies Raise Roadblocks," which appears in the
August/September issue of National Right to Life News.
On July 30, Congressman Chris
Smith (R-NJ) and Congressman Dan Lipinski (D-Il.) introduced a
new bill that would permanently bar subsidies for abortion in
all federal programs.
Rep. Chris Smith (R-NJ)
The measure, titled the
"No Taxpayer Funding for Abortion Act" (H.R. 5939), is strongly
backed by NRLC.
decades, a patchwork of short-term policies have prevented
abortion funding in many programs authorized by Congress, but it
is time for a single, government-wide permanent protection
against taxpayer funding for elective abortion," Smith said.
programs, such as Medicaid, currently do not pay for elective
abortion, thanks to a patchwork of pro-life policies put in
place over a period of decades. Many of these policies are
imposed by provisions of annual appropriations bills that
require annual renewal, the best known of these being the Hyde
Amendment, which prohibits funding of abortion with money from
the annual Health and Human Services appropriations bill.
If the Smith-Lipinski bill
were enacted, it would no longer be necessary to win annual
renewal of the Hyde Amendment or other such temporary bans.
In addition, the bill would
prevent federal funds from subsidizing abortion, or insurance
plans that cover abortion, in any of the new programs created by
the new health care law.
The bill would also make
permanent an important pro-life law that has been enacted on a
year-to-year basis since 2004, known as the Hyde-Weldon
Amendment. This provision prohibits state, local, or federal
government agencies that receive federal DHHS funds from
discriminating against health care providers for refusing to
provide, pay for, provide coverage of, or refer for abortions.
Rep. Joe Pitts (R-Pa.)
"Recent events have
demonstrated, more graphically than ever before, the importance
of achieving a permanent, government-wide prohibition on
subsidies for abortion, and NRLC will work hard for enactment of
this legislation," said NRLC's Johnson.
House Republican Leader John
Boehner (Oh.), who is an original cosponsor of the bill, said,
"There is simply no good reason for Congress not to codify the
Hyde Amendment, which reflects the clearly-expressed will of the
American people. The need for Rep. Smith's bill has become more
clear than ever as a result of the disingenuous way in which the
White House and the Democratic congressional leadership thwarted
enactment of the pro-life Stupak-Pitts amendment during the
debate over health care earlier this year. Rather than allowing
the pro-life Stupak-Pitts amendment to become law, President
Obama issued an Executive Order purporting to eliminate the need
for such an amendment. Americans now know, based on recent
developments and the administration's subsequent scrambling to
patch holes exposed in its claim by pro-life Americans, that the
president's executive order is inadequate."
As of August 23, H.R. 5939
had 167 cosponsors. To view an always-current list of
cosponsors, visit the NRLC Legislative Action Center at
NRLC also supports
legislation known informally as the "Protect Life Act,"
introduced in the House by Congressman Joe Pitts (R-Pa.) as H.R.
5111 (123 cosponsors) and in the Senate by Senator Tom Coburn
(R-Ok.) as S. 3723 (26 cosponsors). This legislation would
revise the recently enacted health care law to prevent any
pro-abortion subsidies or administrative regulations. Its
language is similar to the pro-life amendments that NRLC and
other pro-life groups tried to attach to the health care
legislation when it was under consideration in Congress.
The Pitts-Coburn bill is
intended to correct only the abortion-related problems created
by the Obama-backed health care law – a narrower focus than the
Smith bill, which would apply a uniform pro-life policy to all
federal health programs, both newly created and longstanding.