Life Advocacy Briefing

Special Edition, February 16, 2011

The Battle is Joined

THE U.S. HOUSE WILL BE VOTING REPEATEDLY ON TAXPAYER FUNDED ABORTIONS THIS WEEK as Congress works its will on the Continuing Resolution providing for spending during the current fiscal year. The CR is needed because of the refusal of the Congress last year, under then-Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-SanFrancisco) and Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid (D-NV) to adopt the annual appropriations bills for the 2011 Fiscal Year; spending has continued under a series of CRs, of which the latest is due to expire.

Many of the traditional pro-life spending restrictions are already incorporated into the CR as drafted, but a few pro-life Members are proposing improvements. The abortion lobby and its fellow travelers in Congress are seeking amendments to undo some of the CR’s pro-life provisions.

Abortion policy – tied to spending of federal tax dollars – will be debated through a series of amendments, some from each side of the divide over the right to Life. The amendments can be voted on as early as today, so calls to Congress are critical now. Readers are asked to call their own Member of Congress; if one is not certain of the name, give the operator your zip code; your call should then be directed properly.

The message: Please support all efforts to block taxpayer funding of abortion, to defund Planned Parenthood and to protect the consciences of medical providers. And please oppose all efforts to force taxpayers to underwrite abortions.

The Capitolswitchboard: 1-202/224-3121.

The pro-life amendments:

    • Amendment 11 (Pence) states “None of the funds made available by this Act may be made available for any purpose to Planned Parenthood Federation of America, Inc., or any of the following affiliates of Planned Parenthood Federation of America, Inc.” The amendment goes on to list every PP affiliate in alphabetical order by state.
    • Amendment 54 (Fleming) prevents any funds appropriated through the CR from being used to rescind or otherwise alter the conscience protection regulations currently in effect. Obama Regime efforts to rescind the 2008 Leavitt regulations surfaced last year but have not been completed.
    • Amendment 262 (Latta) wipes out all $440 million allocated for international population control, family planning and “reproductive health.”

The pro-abortion amendments:

    • Amendment 20 (Maloney) strikes language in the CR that bars funding for the United Nations Population Fund (UNFPA) and restores a $55 million earmark for UNFPA which is stricken in the CR.
    • Amendment 138 (Crowley) strikes the CR language barring funding for UNFPA but does not restore the $55 million UNFPA earmark. (Though UNFPA would thus not be mentioned in the appropriation measure, the Secretary of State would be free under this amendment to award US taxpayer funds to UNFPA through “unallocated” funds.
    • Amendment 139 (Crowley) strikes the Mexico City Policy from the CR, which currently bars funding to foreign or international nongovernmental organizations that promote or commit elective abortions.
    • Amendment 135 (Crowley) strikes the Mexico City Policy from the CR and substitutes a prohibition on the President reinstating the policy by executive order, which is how it has been implemented in the administrations of Presidents Ronald Reagan, George H.W. Bush and George W. Bush.
    • Amendment 335 (Lowey) appropriates $317,491,000 to Title X (Ten); in its current draft, the CR eliminates all funding for Title X.
    • Amendment 386 (Castor) removes the CR’s language which eliminates Title X funding and removes funding restrictions on other, unrelated programs.

We offer the amendment numbers and sponsors’ names to help identify the subject matter; it is not necessary for pro-life citizens to cite any or each of these amendments by number or sponsor in phoning Members of Congress unless a citizen wishes to single out one or two of the amendments rather than giving the more general message we outlined herein (see “The message” above).

Permission granted to quote with attribution. Reproduction rights granted only by express authorization.