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Obama Cover-up Revealed On Born-Alive Abortion Survivors Bill

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Commentary by NRLC
 
August 11, 2008 (LifeSiteNews.com) - New documents just obtained by the National Right to Life Committee (NRLC) prove that Senator Obama has for the past four years blatantly misrepresented his actions on the Illinois Born-Alive Infants Protection bill.

Douglas Johnson, NRLC spokesman, explains: "Newly obtained documents prove that in 2003, Barack Obama, as chairman of an Illinois state Senate committee, voted down a bill to protect live-born survivors of abortion - even after the panel had amended the bill to contain verbatim language…explicitly foreclosing any impact on abortion."

In 2000, the Born-Alive Infants Protection Act (BAIPA) was first introduced in Congress.  This was a two-paragraph bill intended to clarify that any baby who is entirely expelled from his or her mother, and who shows any signs of life, is to be regarded as a legal "person" for all federal law purposes, whether or not the baby was born during an attempted abortion.  (To view the original 2000 BAIPA, http://www.nrlc.org/ObamaBAIPA/OriginalFederalBAIPA2000HR4292.pdf)

In 2002, the bill was enacted, after a "neutrality clause" was added to explicitly state that the bill expressed no judgment, in either direction, about the legal status of a human prior to live birth. The bill passed without a dissenting vote in either house of Congress.  (To view the final federal BAIPA as enacted, http://www.nrlc.org/ObamaBAIPA/BAIPAFederal.pdf)

Meanwhile, Barack Obama, as a member of the Illinois State Senate, actively opposed a state version of the BAIPA during three successive regular legislative sessions.  His opposition to the state legislation continued into 2003 - even after NARAL had withdrawn its initial opposition to the federal bill, and after the final federal bill had been enacted in August 2002.

When Obama was running for the U.S. Senate in 2004, his Republican opponent criticized him for supporting "infanticide."  Obama countered this charge by claiming that he had opposed the state BAIPA because it lacked the pre-birth neutrality clause that had been added to the federal bill.  As the Chicago Tribune reported on October 4, 2004, "Obama said that had he been in the U.S. Senate two years ago, he would have voted for the Born-Alive Infants Protection Act, even though he voted against a state version of the proposal….The difference between the state and federal versions, Obama explained, was that the state measure lacked the federal language clarifying that the act would not be used to undermine Roe vs. Wade, the 1973 U.S. Supreme Court opinion that legalized abortion."

During Obama’s 2008 run for President, his campaign and his defenders have asserted repeatedly and forcefully that it is a distortion, or even a smear, to suggest that Obama opposed a state born-alive bill that was the same as the federal bill (See, http://www.nrlc.org/ObamaBAIPA/ObamaFactcheckOnBornAliveBills.mht). The Obama "cover story" has often been repeated as fact, or at least without challenge, in major organs of the news media.  For instance, CNN reported on June 30, 2008, "Senator Obama says if he had been in the U.S. Senate in 2002, he, too, would have voted in favor of the Born Alive Infant Protection Act because unlike the Illinois bill, it included language protecting Roe v. Wade." The New York Times reported the same on August 7, 2008.

National Right to Life and other pro-life observers have always regarded Obama’s "defense" as contrived, since the original two-paragraph BAIPA on its face applied only after a live birth; the "neutrality clause" added in 2001 merely made this explicit, and therefore the new clause did not change the substance of the original bill. 

Moreover, the overwhelming majority of liberal, pro-abortion members of the U.S. House of Representatives did not embrace the initial NARAL position that the original bill was an attack on Roe v. Wade.  The Democratic members of the House Judiciary Committee, then as now, were a solidly liberal group, yet only one of them voted against the original BAIPA without the "neutrality clause," and he cited a different reason. 

When the original bill - with no "neutrality clause" - came up on the House floor on September 26, 2000, it passed 380-15. 

These facts should give pause to those who have unskeptically accepted Obama’s claim that the Illinois BAIPA bills that he opposed in 2001 and 2002, which were modeled on the original federal BAIPA, were crafted to attack Roe v. Wade.

For the moment we can set that debate aside, however, for this reason:  Documents obtained by NRLC now demonstrate conclusively that Obama’s entire defense is based on a brazen factual misrepresentation. 

The documents prove that in March 2003, state Senator Obama, then the chairman of the Illinois state Senate Health and Human Services Committee, presided over a committee meeting in which the "neutrality clause" (copied verbatim from the federal bill) was added to the state BAIPA, with Obama voting in support of adding the revision.  Yet, immediately afterwards, Obama led the committee Democrats in voting against the amended bill, and it was killed, 6-4.

The bill that Chairman Obama killed, as amended, was virtually identical to the federal law; the only remaining differences were on minor points of bill-drafting style. (To see the language of the two bills side by side, see http://www.nrlc.org/ObamaBAIPA/2003AmendedILBAIPAandFedBAIPA.html).

To see the official "Senate Committee Action Report" on this meeting, see http://www.nrlc.org/ObamaBAIPA/ObamaKills2003amendedBAIPA.htm

In this report, the left-hand column shows the roll call vote on adoption of "Senate Amendment No. 1," which was verbatim the neutrality clause copied from the federal bill.  The right hand column shows the roll call by which Obama and his Democratic colleagues then killed the amended bill - the bill that was virtually identical to the federal law that Obama, starting in 2004, claimed he would have supported if he’d had the opportunity.

Less than two years after this meeting, Obama began to publicly claim that he opposed the state BAIPA because it lacked the "neutrality" clause, and that he would have supported the federal version (had he been a member of Congress) because it contained the "neutrality" clause.  His claim has been accepted on its face by various media outlets, producing stories that have in turn been quoted by the Obama campaign and Obama defenders in attacking anyone who asserts that Obama opposed born-alive legislation similar to the federal bill.  It has also been forcefully repeated by advocacy groups such as NARAL.

It appears that as of August 7, 2008, only one writer - Terence Jeffrey, a contributing editor to HumanEvents.com - had correctly reported the essence of this story, in a column posted on January 16, 2008 (read it here: http://www.humanevents.com/article.php?id=24481), but his report was ignored by the Obama campaign and overlooked by others at the time.

Now, the uncovering of the Senate Committee Action Report sheds new light on Senator Obama’s four-year effort to cover up his real record of refusing to protect live-born survivors of abortion.
 
  ADDITIONAL RESOURCES:

"Index of Documents Regarding Obama Cover-up on Born-Alive Abortion Survivors Bill"
http://www.nrlc.org/ObamaBAIPA/index.html

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Indiana Gov. Mike Pence signs the state's Religious Freedom Restoration Act.
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Indiana faces backlash as it becomes 20th state to protect religious liberty

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By Ben Johnson

INDIANAPOLIS, IN, March 27, 2015 (LifeSiteNews.com) – On Thursday, Indiana became the 20th state to prevent the government from forcing people of faith to violate their religious beliefs in business or the public square.

Gov. Mike Pence signed the Religious Freedom Restoration Act (SB 101) into law, saying the freedom of religion is a preeminent American value.

“The Constitution of the United States and the Indiana Constitution both provide strong recognition of the freedom of religion, but today, many people of faith feel their religious liberty is under attack by government action,” Pence said.

Gov. Pence, a possible dark horse candidate for president in 2016, cited court cases brought by religious organizations and employers, including Catholic universities, against the HHS mandate. “One need look no further than the recent litigation concerning the Affordable Care Act. A private business and our own University of Notre Dame had to file lawsuits challenging provisions that required them to offer insurance coverage in violation of their religious views.”

The new law could also prevent Christian business owners from being compelled to bake a cake or take photographs of a same-sex "marriage" ceremony, if doing so violates their faith. In recent years, business owners have seen an increased level of prosecution for denying such services, despite their religious and moral beliefs.

The state's pro-life organization applauded Pence for his stance. "Indiana's pro-life community is grateful to Gov. Mike Pence for signing the Religious Freedom Restoration Act into law,” said Indiana Right to Life's president and CEO Mike Fichter. “This bill will give pro-lifers a necessary legal recourse if they are pressured to support abortion against their deeply-held religious beliefs.”

“RFRA is an important bill to protect the religious freedom of Hoosiers who believe the right to life comes from God, not government,” he said.

The state RFRA is based on the federal bill introduced by Sen. Chuck Schumer, D-NY, and signed into law by President Bill Clinton in 1993. The Supreme Court cited the federal law when it ruled that Hobby Lobby had the right to refuse to fund abortion-inducing drugs, if doing so violated its owners' sincerely held religious beliefs.

In signing the measure – similar to the one Arizona Gov. Jan Brewer vetoed – Pence and the state of Indiana have faced a torrent of venom from opponents of the bill, who claim it grants a “right to discriminate” and raises the spectre of segregation.

"They've basically said, as long as your religion tells you to, it's OK to discriminate against people," said Sarah Warbelow, legal director of the Human Rights Campaign, a national homosexual pressure group.

The Disciples of Christ, a liberal Protestant denomination based in the state capital, has said it will move its 2017 annual convention if the RFRA became state law. The NCAA warned the bill's adoption “might affect future events” in the Hoosier state.

Pence denied such concerns, saying, "This bill is not about discrimination, and if I thought it legalized discrimination in any way I would've vetoed it."

The bill's supporters say that, under the Obama administration, it is Christians who are most likely to suffer discrimination.

"Originally RFRA laws were intended to protect small religious groups from undue burdens on practicing their faith in public life,” said Mark Tooley, president of the Institute on Religion and Democracy. “It was not imagined there would come a day when laws might seek to jail or financially destroy nuns, rabbis or Christian camp counselors who prefer to abstain from the next wave of sexual and gender experimentation. And there's always a next wave.”

The bill's supporters note that it does not end the government's right to coerce people of faith into violating their conscience in every situation. However, it requires that doing so has to serve a compelling government interest and the government must use the least restrictive means possible. “There will be times when a state or federal government can show it has a compelling reason for burdening religious expression – to ensure public safety, for instance,” said Sarah Torre, an expert at the Heritage Foundation. “But Religious Freedom Restoration Acts set a high bar for the government to meet in order to restrict religious freedom.”

Restricting the ability of government to interfere in people's private decisions, especially their religious decisions, is the very purpose of the Constitution, its supporters say.

"Religious freedom is the cornerstone of all liberty for all people,” Tooley said. “Deny or reduce it, and there are no ultimate limits on the state's power to coerce."

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Fight pornography. Beat pornography. And join the ranks of those who support their fellow men and women still fighting.
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Porn is transforming our men from protectors into predators. Fight back.

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By Jonathon van Maren

Since I’ve gotten involved in anti-pornography work, I’ve met countless men who struggle, fight, or have beaten pornography. Each person seems to deal with the guilt and shame that accompanies porn use in a different way—some deny that it’s “all that bad,” others pretend that they could “stop whenever they want,” many insist that “everyone is doing it,” and most, when pressed, admit to a deep sense of self-loathing.

One worry surfaces often in conversation: What do my past or current struggles with pornography say about me as a man? Can I ever move past this and have a meaningful and fulfilling relationship?

I want to address this question just briefly, since I’ve encountered it so many times.

First, however, I’ve written before how I at times dislike the language of “struggling” with pornography or pornography “addiction,” not because they aren’t accurate but because too often they are used as an excuse rather than an explanation. It is true, many do in fact “struggle” with what can legitimately be considered an addiction, but when this language is used to describe an interminable battle with no end (and I’ve met dozens of men for whom this is the case), then I prefer we use terminology like “fighting my porn habit.” A semantic debate, certainly, but one I think is important. We need to stop struggling with porn and start fighting it.

Secondly, pornography does do devastating things to one’s sense of masculinity. We know this. Pornography enslaves men by the millions, perverting their role as protector and defender of the more vulnerable and turning them into sexual cannibals, consuming those they see on-screen to satisfy their sexual appetites.

What often starts as mere curiosity or an accidental encounter can turn into something that invades the mind and twists even the most basic attractions. I’ve met porn users who can’t believe the types of things they want to watch. They haven’t simply been using porn. Porn has actively reshaped them into something they don’t recognize and don’t like. 

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Porn is this generation’s great assault on masculinity and the role of men in society. It is essential that we win this battle for the sake of society’s survival. Contrary to what the gender-bending and family-morphing progressive elites claim, good husbands and good fathers and good church leaders are necessary for a healthy society. But pornography is destroying marriages, creating distant and disconnected fathers, and, metaphoricaclly castrating men, hindering their ability and desire to make a positive difference in the society around us.

So, with this sobering set of facts in mind let’s return to the question: what do pornography struggles, past and present, say about a man?

The proper way to respond is with everything that is good about masculinity. We have to fight pornography as men have fought countless evils throughout the ages. We need to fight pornography to protect women, and wives, and children, and our society at large. This is how pornography threatens society, by castrating men, and turning them from protectors into predators. Rooting out the evil in our own lives allows us to better fulfill the role we are called to perform in the lives of others. Battling our own demons enables us to battle the wider cultural demons. Every day without porn is another bit of virtue built. Virtue is not something you’re born with. Virtues are habits that you build. And one day without porn is the first step towards the virtue of being porn-free.

Many men ask me if men who have had past porn addictions are cut out for being in a relationship or working in the pro-life movement or in other areas where we are called to protect and defend the weak and vulnerable. And the answer to that is an unequivocal yes. Our society needs men who know what it means to fight battles and win. Our society needs men who can say that they fought porn and they beat porn, because their families and their friends were too important to risk. Our society needs men who rose to the challenge that the evils of their generation threw at them, and became better men as the result. And our society needs men who can help their friends and their sons and those around them fight the plague of pornography and free themselves from it, too—and who can understand better and offer encouragement more relevant than someone who has fought and been freed themselves?

So the answer to men is yes. Fight pornography. Beat pornography. And join the ranks of those who support their fellow men and women still fighting. Lend them support and encouragement. We cannot change the fact that porn has left an enormous path of destruction in its wake. But we can change the fact that too many people aren’t fighting it. We can change our own involvement. And we can rise to the challenge and face this threat to masculinity with all that is good about masculinity.

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Red Alert!

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I don’t like having to do this, but we have always found it best to be totally upfront with our readers: our Spring fundraising campaign is now worrying us! 

You see, with just 6 days remaining, we have only raised 30% of our goal, with $125,000 still left to raise. That is a long ways to go yet.

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Every year, LifeSite readership continues to grow by leaps and bounds. This year, we are again experiencing record-breaking interest, with over 6 million people visiting our website last month alone!

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And especially keep this in mind. As many more people read LifeSite, our mission of bringing about cultural change gets boosted. Our ultimate goal has always been to educate and activate the public to take well-informed, needed actions.

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Today, I hope you will join the many heroes who keep this ship afloat, and enable us to proclaim the truth through our reporting to tens of millions of people every year!

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