Blanket Pro-Life Veto Warning by
WASHINGTON -- President Bush today sent identical letters
to House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-Ca.) and Senate Majority
Leader Harry Reid (D-Nv.), stating flatly, "I will veto any
legislation that weakens current Federal policies and laws
on abortion, or that encourages the destruction of human
life at any stage."
Johnson, legislative director for National Right to Life,
commented, "We appreciate that the President is drawing a
bright line -- he will veto any appropriations bill, or any
other bill, that would weaken the existing laws against
federal funding of abortion or weaken other pro-life
members of the House of Representatives and 34 members of
the U.S. Senate had already sent the President previously
unpublicized letters (dated March 30 and February 1,
respectively), urging the President to veto bills that
weaken existing pro-life policies, and indicating that they
will vote to sustain such vetoes. Those numbers exceed the
number required to sustain a veto in either house.
President's letter comes as congressional appropriations
committees are about to begin moving forward with funding
bills for the fiscal year that begins October 1. Many
important pro-life policies are kept in place by provisions
of such appropriations bills, sometimes called "riders,"
including the Hyde Amendment, which prohibits federal
funding for abortion (except to save the life of the mother,
or in cases of rape or incest).
Pro-abortion advocacy groups have been pressuring the new
Democratic congressional leadership to attack these pro-life
letters today, the President wrote, "I am concerned that
this year the Congress may consider legislation that could
substantially change Federal policies and laws on abortion,
and allow taxpayer dollars to be used for the destruction of
human life. I am writing to make sure that there is no
misunderstanding of my views on these important issues."
Bush's letter to Speaker Pelosi is posted
Bush's letter to Majority Leader Reid is posted
letter from 155 members of the U.S. House of Representatives
to President Bush, pledging to vote to sustain vetoes on
pro-life issues, is posted
letter from 34 senators is posted