NewsWed Aug 12, 2009 - 12:15 pm EST
NETWORK’s Sr. Campbell Backs Ryan-DeLauro “Planned Parenthood Bailout Bill”
By Kathleen Gilbert
WASHINGTON, D.C., August 12, 2009 (LifeSiteNews.com) - The executive director of the Catholic social justice lobby NETWORK and other left-leaning Catholic groups have heaped praise on a bill issued by two pro-abortion legislators that, while touted as a "common ground" measure, would both pour more federal funding into Planned Parenthood and mandate abortion coverage in state medical assistance programs.
The "Preventing Unintended Pregnancies, Reducing the Need for Abortion and Supporting Parents Act" was introduced in the House July 23 by Rep. Tim Ryan (D-Ohio) and Rep. Rosa DeLauro, both of whom have anti-life voting records. The bill has been condemned by the USCCB pro-life office as a "Planned Parenthood Economic Stimulus Plan."
While containing some provisions to expand care for women with crisis pregnancies, the bill proposes to channel $700 million to Title X "family planning" funding, which heavily funds Planned Parenthood. It also makes "family planning services" a mandatory Medicaid entitlement in all 50 states, and expands Medicaid family planning eligibility to all women eligible under state law for prenatal care.
NETWORK's Sr. Simone Campbell, a Sister of Social Service, said that the legislation "gives me hope that we can finally begin to move beyond using pregnancy as a political wedge issue and to focus instead on providing women and families with the resources they need for healthy pregnancies and babies."
"It is time to work together to eliminate political posturing on this issue," she added. Catholics United for the Common Good and the National Coalition of American Nuns also supported the bill, according to a report by the Baltimore Archdiocesan newspaper the Catholic Review.
DeLauro, one of the bill's sponsors, has a 100% pro-abortion rating from NARAL. The bill's second sponsor, Tim Ryan, has been billed as a "pro-life" supporter for the bill, but has recently accrued a steadily pro-abortion voting record. While once known as a pro-life lawmaker, in the latest cycle, Ryan was awarded a 0% pro-life voting record by the National Right to Life Committee (NRLC). NRLC legislative director Douglas Johnson described Ryan as a representative who "poses as a pro-life lawmaker for purposes of undercutting genuine pro-life efforts."
Both Planned Parenthood and NARAL have also thrown their weight behind the bill.
When the legislation came to light in late July, Susan Wills, an assistant director within the U.S. Bishops' Pro-Life Office, called it "the Planned Parent Economic Stimulus Package of 2009."
As Wills pointed out, and as Ryan said in an interview on MSNBC's "Hardball" in May, the bill relies on contraception to "reduce" abortions, rather than actually restricting the abortion procedure. Ryan's own bishop, Youngstown's Bishop George Murray, released a statement last week opposing the bill and its reliance on contraception - which is forbidden by the Catholic Church - as a supposed means of reducing abortion.
"This act is based on the mistaken belief that greater access to contraception reduces abortions and, in addition, some contraceptives may have an abortifacient effect," said Bishop Murry. Murry noted that numerous studies have shown that taxpayer support of contraception does not reduce unintended pregnancies and abortions.
The bishop's conclusion is also supported by the skyrocketing teen pregnancy and abortion rates in countries such as the U.K. and Sweden, where governments have vastly expanded contraception distribution programs.
Pro-life leaders also warn that the bill, if passed, would force all 50 states to fund abortions in state medical assistance programs.
Americans United for Life (AUL) pointed out a provision of the Ryan-DeLauro bill (HR 3312) in Title VII, section 107, mandating that states provide abortion in their medical assistance programs.
This provision, said AUL, would be a radical extension of federally mandated taxpayer funding of abortion, and an unprecedented mandate that states cover abortion in state medical assistance programs.
"Planned Parenthood and NARAL wouldn't back a so-called 'common ground' bill unless it included abortion services," said AUL President and CEO Dr. Charmaine Yoest. "Efforts to paint this bill as 'pro-life,' are deceptive."
Late last month, Sr. Campbell also threw her weight behind immediate health care reform and complained that enacting reform legislation was being delayed by "insignificant details." Pro-life leaders have been raising the alarm on the current health care bills as they are set to vastly expand abortion, in addition to several other troubling aspects.
See related LifeSiteNews.com coverage:
‘Little miracles’: Mom gives birth to naturally-conceived quintuplets after refusing ‘selective reduction’
AUSTRALIA, February 5, 2016 (LifeSiteNews) -- A 26-year-old Australian mom has given birth to five healthy babies, all conceived naturally, after refusing the doctor’s advice that she must abort three of them in order to give the remaining two a better chance at life.
“After my initial ultrasound I was told I could consider the selection method to give 2 babies the best chance in life,” wrote mom Kim Tucci in a Facebook post last September.
“I watched a YouTube video on the procedure and I cried. I could never do that! Was I selfish for not giving two the chance of 100% survival? All I knew is that I already love them and that every heart beat I heard I connect with them more. For me life starts when a heart starts beating and all I know for sure is that I will do whatever it takes to bring them into this world healthy,” she wrote.
Last Thursday Kim and her husband Vaughn welcomed the five new members into their family — one boy and four girls —increasing the number of their children from 3 to 8. The babies were born at 30 weeks, 10 weeks early, due to insufficient space in Kim’s womb. They weighed on average about 2.5 pounds.
The quintuplets’ story began last March, after Kim and Vaughn had been trying for six months to conceive just one more child for their family. Due to health complications, Kim wondered if she would ever become a mother again.
After what she thought was an extra long cycle, she decided to take a pregnancy test.
“I was feeling tired and a little nauseated and thought I would take a pregnancy test just to get the ‘what if’ out of my head. To my shock and utter excitement it was positive,” she wrote on a Facebook post.
The parents got the shock of their lives when doctors confirmed in an ultrasound examination that there was not one baby, but five.
“After a long wait for the ultrasound we finally went in. The sonographer told me there were multiple gestational sacks, but she could only see a heart beat in two. I was so excited! Twins!”
“I was moved to another machine for a clearer view and had the head doctor come in and double check the findings. She started to count, one, two, three, four, five. Did i hear that correctly? Five? My legs start to shake uncontrollably and all i can do is laugh. The sonographer then told me the term for five is ‘quintuplets,’” Kim wrote.
Even though Kim began to feel stretched to the limit with all those human lives growing inside her, she chose to focus on her babies, and not herself, referring to them as “my five little miracles.”
“It's getting harder as each day passes to push through the pain, every part of my body aches and sleeping is becoming very painful. No amount of pillows are helping support my back and belly. Sometimes I get so upset that I just want to throw my hands up and give in.”
“Sometimes my pelvis becomes so stiff I can barely walk and my hips feel like they are grinding away constantly. I'm finding it hard to eat as I basically have no room left in my stomach, and the way it is positioned it's pushed all the way back with the babies leaning against it.”
“My skin on my belly is so stretched its painful and hot to touch. It literally feels like I have hives! No amount of cream helps relieve the discomfort. I have a lot of stretch marks now. Dealing with such a huge change in my body is hard.”
“Is it all worth it? Yes!!!! I will keep pushing through,” she wrote in one Facebook post days before the babies were born.
The newborns' names are Keith, Ali, Penelope, Tiffany, and Beatrix. They were born at King Edward Memorial Hospital in Subiaco, Western Australia. Mother and babies are reported to be doing well.
UN rights chief tells Catholic countries to legalize abortion over Zika virus: bishops and cardinal react
GENEVA, February 5, 2016 (LifeSiteNews) -- The United Nations, following the lead of international abortion activists, is now urging Latin American countries hit by the mosquito-borne Zika virus to lift restrictions on abortion for pregnant women who have contacted the virus and whose pre-born children may be at risk for birth defects, including having smaller than normal heads.
The UN human rights office said today that it is not enough for South American countries to urge women to postpone pregnancy without also offering them abortion as a final solution.
“How can they ask these women not to become pregnant, but not offer… the possibility to stop their pregnancies?” UN spokeswoman Cecile Pouilly told reporters.
UN human rights chief Zeid Ra’ad al-Hussein said that governments should make available contraception and abortion services.
“Laws and policies that restrict (women’s) access to these services must be urgently reviewed in line with human rights obligations in order to ensure the right to health for all in practice,” he said.
But Brazil’s bishops strongly asserted yesterday that efforts should be made to eradicate the virus, not the people who may be infected by it.
The disease is “no justification whatsoever to promote abortion,” they said in a statement, adding that it is not morally acceptable to promote abortion “in the cases of microcephaly, as, unfortunately, some groups are proposing to the Supreme Federal Court, in a total lack of respect for the gift of life.”
Honduras Cardinal Oscar Rodriguez Maradiaga has also come out strongly against the notion of “therapeutic abortions” as a response to the problem. Unlike Brazil where abortion is legal in the case of rape or health of the mother, abortion remains entirely illegal in Honduras.
“We should never talk about ‘therapeutic’ abortion,” the cardinal said in a homily at a February 3 Mass in Suyap. “Therapeutic abortion doesn’t exist. Therapeutic means curing, and abortion cures nothing. It takes innocent lives,” he said.
While the World Health Organization (WHO) declared an international public health emergency February 1 on account of concerns over the virus, critics have pointed out, however, that not one death as resulted from the virus. Even on WHO’s own website the virus is described in mild terms.
“It causes mild fever and rash. Other symptoms include muscle pain, joint pain, headache, pain behind the eyes and conjunctivitis. Zika virus disease is usually mild, with symptoms lasting only a few days,” the website states. “To date, there have been no reported deaths associated with Zika virus,” it added.
Critics suspect that the crisis is being manipulated to advance an anti-human agenda on the pre-born.
“Is Zika, actually, a hideous virus that threatens to spread uncontrollably across the world creating an army of disabled children with tiny heads and low IQ’s? Or might this be a willful misinterpretation of the scarce data to manipulate public opinion and legislatures?” wrote pro-life critic Mei-Li Garcia earlier this week.
“It becomes very clear that the publicity surrounding this story has a very little to do with medicine and a lot to do with a convenient crisis that is being used by those pushing for the legalization of abortion around the world,” she wrote.
Hillary’s litmus test for Supreme Court picks: They must ‘preserve Roe v. Wade’
DERRY, NH, February 5, 2016 (LifeSiteNews) - Hillary Clinton has a litmus test for Supreme Court nominees - several, in fact. At a Democratic event on Wednesday, Clinton unveiled her criteria in selecting a judge for the nation's highest court.
“I do have a litmus test, I have a bunch of litmus tests," she said.
"We’ve got to make sure to preserve Roe v. Wade, not let it be nibbled away or repealed,” she said.
That echoes her recent call to arms speech before Planned Parenthood last month, when she stated that taxpayers must fund abortion-on-demand in order to uphold the "right" of choice.
“We have to preserve marriage equality,” Clinton said, referring to last summer's Obergefell v. Hodges case, a 5-4 ruling that redefined marriage nationwide. “We have to go further to end discrimination against the LGBT community."
Her views differentiate her from the Republican front runners. Ted Cruz has called the court's marriage ruling "fundamentally illegitimate," and Donald Trump told Fox News Sunday this week that he would "be very strong on putting certain judges on the bench that I think maybe could change things." Marco Rubio has said he won't "concede" the issue to the one-vote majority.
All Republican presidential hopefuls say they are pro-life and will defund Planned Parenthood.
Her husband, Bill Clinton, raised the makeup of the Supreme Court early last month in New Hampshire, saying it receives "almost no attention" as a campaign issue.
On Wednesday, Hillary said "the next president could get as many as three appointments. It’s one of the many reasons why we can’t turn the White House over to the Republicans again.”
Clinton said her judicial appointees must also reverse the Citizens United ruling on campaign finance and oppose a recent decision striking down a portion of the 1965 Voting Rights Act. In 2013's Shelby County v. Holder, justices struck down Section 4(b) of the act, which said that certain states and jurisdictions had to obtain permission from the federal government before changing their voting laws.
At one time, most politicians frowned upon any "litmus test" for judicial nominees, emphasizing the independence of the third branch of government. "I don't believe in litmus tests," Jeb Bush told Chuck Todd last November.
But with the rise of an activist judiciary in the middle of the 20th century, constitutionalists have sought to rein in the power of the bench.