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June 2003


Congressman Steve Chabot (R-Ohio), prime sponsor of the Partial-Birth Abortion Ban Act, carries an illustration of a partial-birth abortion from the U.S. House chamber, following approval of the bill on June 4, 2003.

President George W. Bush is eager to sign the Partial-Birth Abortion Ban Act. Rep. F. James Sensenbrenner (R-Wi.), chairman,
House Judiciary Committee.

WASHINGTON (June 6, 2003) - - The day is fast approaching when the Partial-Birth Abortion Ban Act will be signed into law by President Bush, following overwhelming endorsement of the bill by the U.S. House of Representatives on June 4.

The signing will be the culmination of an eight-year fight by the National Right to Life Committee and other pro-life forces.

The ban, which was twice vetoed by President Bill Clinton, is strongly supported by President Bush.

With boost from Sharon Rocha, Texas enacts strong unborn victims bill

Unborn Victims of Violence Act Continues to Gain Momentum in Congress, As Pro-Abortion Groups Resist

Sharon Rocha, mother of murder victim Laci Peterson, grandmother of murder victim Conner Peterson. Her letter helped pass the Prenatal Protection Act in Texas.

WASHINGTON (June 6, 2003) - - As public attention remains riveted on the unfolding story of the murder of Laci Peterson and her unborn son Conner in California, momentum continues to build in Washington for congressional action on landmark legislation to allow justice to be done on behalf of unborn victims of violence.

The National Right to Life Committee (NRLC) is pushing for congressional approval of the Unborn Victims of Violence Act (S. 1019, H.R. 1997), a bill to recognize as legal crime victims unborn children who are injured or killed during the commission of violent federal crimes.

NRLC helped originate the legislation in 1999, and was instrumental in winning approval of the bill in the House of Representatives in 1999 and again in 2001. The Senate never took up the issue, however, because of strong opposition from pro-abortion groups such as NARAL, the ACLU, and the Planned Parenthood Federation of America, which insist that the law must never recognize unborn children as crime victims.


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From the President

Wanda Franz, Ph.D.


The first step in securing the constitutional protection of the right to life is a realistic assessment of the situation we face. Since we must persuade a majority of our fellow citizens to accept our goal, public opinion polls are an important tool in this assessment. Let's be clear here: the point is not to have our values shaped by opinion polls, but to use them to develop strategies of education and persuasion so that the majority accepts pro-life principles and acts on them.

So where do we stand after over 43 million legal abortions, 30 years of Roe v. Wade, and over 30 years of pro-life work? (In this review I am relying mainly on special reports authored by Lydia Saad of the Gallup Organization and polls by Gallup, the Los Angeles Times, and Newsweek.)

According to the latest Gallup poll, 23% say abortion should be "legal under any circumstances," 15% want it "legal under most circumstances," 42% want to restrict it to "legal only in a few circumstances," and 19% want it to be "illegal in all circumstances." In 1975, the numbers for "always legal" and "always illegal" were at 21% and 22%, respectively. From there the "always legal" segment rose to 33% by 1995. Then, as Lydia Saad noted, coinciding with our campaign to ban partial-birth abortions, support for the "always legal" position began to deteriorate. For the last several years, only about 25% have adhered to the strict pro-abortion position and about 20% have supported the strict pro-life position.


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