Life Advocacy Briefing

August 18 , 2008


Seminar on Tap / Knight Throws Down Gauntlet / Judge Says ‘No’ to Planned Parenthood / Pulling Back the Wool / Making the Case for the Pence Amendment

Seminar on Tap

LIFE ADVOCACY’s WINNING WITH LIFE SEMINAR is scheduled for this Saturday, Aug. 23, in Tinley Park, Illinois. Designed to equip pro-life candidates, officials and citizens for effective, strategic communication on Life issues, the six-hour session features former Illinois State Rep. Penny Pullen, Life Advocacy’s president, and her seminar teammate Kevin Burnette, Texas-based marketing and campaign strategist.

Information and $40 credit card registration is available by calling 1-888/344-LIFE or via electronic mail at [email protected]. Registration may also be accomplished via $40 “donation” at, completing all information requested.


Knight Throws Down Gauntlet

THE CHIEF OF A MAJOR ROMAN CATHOLIC FRATERNAL ORGANIZATION has issued a declaration for “change” in the context of the 2008 election – “‘real change,’” said Carl Anderson, Supreme Knight of the Knights of Columbus, quoted by Peter J. Smith in, “‘and real change,’” he said, “‘means the end of Roe v. Wade.’”

Addressing the 126th annual convention of the Knights of Columbus, held earlier this month in Quebec, Canada, Mr. Anderson, writes Mr. Smith, “pledged the Knights to fight abortion-promoting politicians, who buy Catholic votes with their stand on other issues. … ‘It’s time we stop accommodating pro-abortion politicians, and it’s time we start demanding that they accommodate us.’ …

“In contrast to other Catholic social justice issues like poverty and the death penalty, [Mr.] Anderson asked delegates,” quoted by LifeSiteNews, “‘What political issue could possibly outweigh this human devastation’ of nearly 50 million deaths in the US since 1973? ‘The answer, of course,’” said Mr. Anderson as reported by Mr. Smith, “‘is that there is none. … Abortion,’” he added, “‘is different. Abortion is the killing of the innocent on a massive scale.’”

Mr. Anderson continued, mincing no words about abortion-backing politicians. “‘It is time,’” he said in the LifeSiteNews report, “‘to stop creating excuses for pro-abortion candidates. Catholics should no longer be asked to be partners in the abortion regime by voting for politicians who support abortion. We will never succeed in building a culture of life if we continue to vote for politicians who defend and support a culture of death,’ said [Mr.] Anderson to thunderous applause from the assembly. ‘It is time that Catholics shine a bright line of separation between themselves and all those politicians of every political party who defend the abortion regime of Roe v. Wade.’”

Delegates to the Knights of Columbus convention adopted a resolution, reports, “opposing ‘any governmental action or policy that promotes abortion, embryonic stem cell research, human cloning, euthanasia, assisted suicide and other offenses against life.’

“The delegates,” reports LifeSiteNews, “also challenged ‘our fellow Catholics who are elected officials to be true to the faith they claim to profess by acting bravely and publicly in defense of life, affirming with Pope Benedict XVI that “there can be no room for purely private religion.”’”

The resolution “reaffirmed the organization’s ‘long-standing policy,’” reports LifeSiteNews, “‘of not inviting to any Knights of Columbus event persons – especially public officials or candidates for public office – who do not support the legal protection of unborn children.’”


Judge Says ‘No’ to Planned Parenthood

A CALIFORNIA JUDGE HAS REBUFFED PLANNED PARENTHOOD’s BID to block distribution of a ballot pamphlet offering the rationale for a proposition on the November ballot seeking to enact a statute barring abortions on minor girls without notification to an adult relative.

Planned Parenthood’s objections, reports Britain’s Society for the Protection of Unborn Children (SPUC) citing Catholic News Agency as source, centered on the pamphlet’s use of case studies including the tragic death of 15-year-old “Sarah” in a 1994 secret abortion.

“Planned Parenthood could not refute the assertion by the leaflet’s publishers,” notes SPUC, “that no girl had been harmed by parental notification.”


Pulling Back the Wool

Excerpts from August 11, 2008, statement by Douglas Johnson, spokesman, National Right to Life Committee

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, copied from a federal bill passed by Congress without objection in 2002, explicitly foreclosing any impact on abortion. Obama’s legislative actions in 2003 – denying effective protection even to babies born alive during abortions – were contrary to the position taken on the same language by even the most liberal Members of [the US Senate]. …

Barack Obama, as a member of the Illinois State Senate, actively opposed a state version of the Born Alive Infants Protection Act [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 federal bill had been enacted in August 2002.

When Obama was running for the US 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 Oct. 4, 2004: “Obama said that had he been in the US 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 federal version was approved; the state version was not. … 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 v. Wade, the 1973 US 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. … The Obama “cover story” has often been repeated as fact – or at least without challenge – in major organs of the news media. …

NRLC 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. …

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 Sen. Obama, then the chairman of the Illinois State Senate Health & 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.

[The actual documents can be viewed by clicking on links to them in the midst of the full NRLC statement at the Internet website]

… 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 Aug. 7, 2008, only one writer – Terence Jeffrey, a contributing editor to – had correctly reported the essence of this story, in a column posted on Jan. 16, 2008, but his report was ignored by the Obama campaign and overlooked by others at the time.

Now, the uncovering of the [documents cited by NRLC, including a “contemporary Associated Press report”] sheds new light on Sen. Obama’s four-year effort to cover up his real record of refusing to protect live-born survivors of abortion.

[Life Advocacy Briefing editor’s note: The extraordinary unanimity of the US Senate in backing BAIPA legislation – to define infants born alive as persons meriting medical assessment and appropriate treatment regardless of the circumstances of their birth – suggests any lawmaker who would vote against such a proposal on a mere technicality is indeed repugnantly radical. The Obama “defense” should never have been accepted either by the media, by his backers or by voters struggling to fit his record into a woolly jacket of respectability.]


Making the Case for the Pence Amendment

July 9, 2008, special order speeches in the U.S. House; source: Congressional Record. Please note: We at Life Advocacy Briefing are not expecting that this Congress will actually take up the Pence Amendment to defund Planned Parenthood in this election year; nevertheless, we find the “special order” speeches a compelling tool for educating the American people about the injustice in the massive subsidies taxpayers are forced to remit to Planned Parenthood. This week’s comes in the form of a colloquy between Rep. Jeb Hensarling (R-TX) and Rep. Michelle Bachmann (R-MN), one of the special order’s organizers.

REP. HENSARLING: Would the gentlelady yield?

REP. BACHMANN: Absolutely.

REP. HENSARLING: I want to thank her for bringing this article in the Wall Street Journal, one of America’s largest newspapers, to the attention of this body. And obviously it is fascinating for us to discover that the single largest provider of abortion in the nation, Planned Parenthood – I believe performing one out of five abortions in America – has now planned, according to the press, a rebranding campaign to appeal to women of means. I quote from the article: “A move that opens new avenues for boosting revenue and, they hope, political clout.”

And as I understand from the gentlelady from Minnesota, as I read through this article, that their political action arm plans to raise $10 million to influence the fall campaign. And as they take the lives of almost 300,000 innocent children, not only is the American taxpayer being asked to subsidize this horrid, this gruesome procedure that so many in America consider to be absolutely immoral, then to top even more indignity on the act, they’re going to turn around and use money and come back to Congress and ask for even more. Do I understand that correctly?

REP. BACHMANN: You absolutely do. That’s exactly what the article says. In fact, it goes on to say that it’s the federal tax law that has caused this tragedy.

I’m a former federal tax litigation attorney, and this is absolutely true. This is what our tax code allows. In fact, Planned Parenthood, who plans to raise the $10 million, as the gentleman from Texas said correctly, they can take that money that we taxpayers are giving them to mobilize voters and advocate on issues such as abortion rights and sex education in schools. Life care centers don’t get that advantage, but people who advocate for the destruction of innocent human life get this money.

REP. HENSARLING: And if the gentlelady will yield again, I see in the same article that as the taxpayers have to subsidize all of these abortions, that Planned Parenthood are updating their clinics to “have a contemporary, fun and lively look with a new color palette that includes pink, orange and teal.” Can the gentlelady enlighten me what is contemporary, fun and lively about the abortion industry?

REP. BACHMANN: As the gentleman knows, there is nothing fun about an abortion. In fact, for many women, they are forced into abortion by a boyfriend who says they’ll leave them, by parents who say, “What an embarrassment.” And women, often against their own desires, are forced into getting an abortion when they don’t want to. …

REP. HENSARLING: … The gentlelady from Minnesota spoke about life-saving centers. On Monday of this week, I went to one. I didn’t go as a Member of Congress; I went as a father. And my wife and I have two small children – six and four – and it was time to donate their old baby beds and donate a bunch of maternity clothes. And I had heard about the Dallas Pregnancy Resource Center – a bunch of great ladies in Dallas, Texas, trying to save human life. I had heard of them. I didn’t think they knew me, and I showed up on a Monday morning unshowered, unshaven, in a T-shirt to donate two baby beds and a box full of maternity clothes that belonged to my wife. They were very thankful for the gift. And when I was filling out the paperwork, they realized who I was and insisted that I tour the facility. … I complied with their request, and I’m glad I did.

And it is amazing to me, as I think upon my visit with these ladies on Monday, to think that on the one hand, you have Planned Parenthood getting hundreds of millions of dollars of taxpayers’ money to take the lives of the most innocent among us, the unborn – as pictured next to the gentlelady from Minnesota – hundreds of millions of dollars spent on this abortion factor.

And here is this one little place in Dallas, Texas, called the Dallas Pregnancy Resource Center, and they sit there and they counsel with these low-income, these mostly young teen mothers. And every time that they are able to convince a mother to choose life over death, they put a tiny, tiny set of paper footprints on a bulletin board. As you might imagine, sometimes they’re blue, and sometimes they’re pink, and they have the date that one human life was saved.

To the best of my knowledge, the Dallas Pregnancy Resource Center receives no federal money whatsoever to save human lives, and Planned Parenthood takes hundreds of millions of dollars of federal taxpayer money to take human life. Something is wrong in America when that takes place.

We need to stop, we need to take note of what is taking place. In my head and in my heart, I can come to no other conclusion but that life begins at conception. I take it as a matter of faith, but if I didn’t take it as a matter of faith, how can any human being, how can any American, look at that picture next to the gentlelady from Minnesota and conclude otherwise?

In our founding documents, the right to life is unalienable. How can this body ever act otherwise?


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