RE: Pro-life scorecard votes on Financial Services Appropriations bill (H.R. 5485)
Dear Member of Congress:
When the House of Representatives takes up the FY 2017 Financial Services Appropriations bill (H.R. 5485), we anticipate roll calls on several amendments that we expect to be included in the National Right to Life scorecard of key pro-life roll calls of the 114th Congress.
As reported by the Appropriations Committee, Section 817 of the bill incorporates language taken from H.R. 5233, a bill that the House passed on May 25 (roll call no. 248) to further establish that the so-called “budget autonomy” law enacted by local officials of the District of Columbia is null and void. We have previously expressed our strong support for H.R. 5233. We urge you to vote against the Norton Amendment (no. 25), which would delete this crucial provision from the bill.
If Congress fails to assert its constitutional responsibility over the seat of government, we can expect more assaults by District authorities against pro-life and other conservative groups that are based in the District, such as we’ve already seen in the so-called “Reproductive Health Nondiscrimination Act,” a local law enacted by the District Council in 2014. As we have explained in previous communications to Congress, this law places groups such as National Right to Life in legal jeopardy simply for making hiring or firing decisions based on adherence to core pro-life principles. We urge you to vote in favor of the Palmer Amendment (no. 54) to curb implementation of the “Reproductive Health Nondiscrimination Act.”
In addition, we urge you to vote against the Grayson Amendment (no. 94), which would strike from the bill a longstanding provision (currently found in Sec. 613-614) that prohibits elective abortion coverage within the Federal Employees Health Benefits program.
Thank you for your consideration of the National Right to Life position on these important amendments.
Douglas D. Johnson
National Right to Life Committee