Brazilian Abortion Decriminalization Bill Suffers New Defeat
By Matthew Cullinan Hoffman
BRASILIA, June 27, 2008 (LifeSiteNews.com)—A bill to decriminalize abortion that has been in process in the Brazilian Congress for 17 years has received its second major defeat in recent weeks after being rejected by the President of the Constitution, Justice, and Citizenship Committee of Brazil’s Chamber of Deputies (the nation’s lower legislative house).
"The fetus has the right not to be killed," said Eduardo Cunha, explaining why he would recommended a "no" vote to the legislation (PL-1135/1991), which is supported by the administration of Brazilian President Luiz Lula da Silva. He also recommended rejecting another bill, PL-176/1995, which would establish abortion as a "right".
On June 26, Cunha presented his case before the committee, stating that the bills seek to decriminalize abortions, but in the judicial system of Brazil "the inviolability of the right to life is assured".
"The right to life constitutes the supreme value of the Constitution, because all other rights are derived from it," he added. He noted that not even a constitutional amendment can abolish the right to life.
The rejection by Cunha follows the historic defeat of PL 1135/1991 in the Chamber’s Social Security and Family Committee on May 7 of this year, 33-0.
The Constitution, Justice, and Citizenship Committee will hold a full vote after two rounds of public hearings, which will receive testimony from José Gomes Temporão, President Lula’s pro-abortion health minister, as well as other representatives of both sides of the debate.
Text and History of Abortion Decriminalization Bill PL-1135/1991 (Portuguese)
Text and History of Abortion "Rights" Bill PL-176/1995 (Portuguese)
Related LifeSiteNews Coverage:
Smashing Defeat for Pro-Abortion Forces in Brazil
On the Pro-Life Victory in Brazil: "I have Never Seen This Happen in the National Congress!"