Life Advocacy Briefing

February 4, 2013

ObamaCare Repeal Launched in Senate / Child Custody Protection Act Filed in Senate
March for Life Takes D.C. / Judge Lifts Hammer from S.B.A. List
Another ObamaCare Mandate Win in 7th Circuit / Time Running Out?
Feds Tolerate Plan B via Vending Machine / Taking Every Opportunity / Snapshot
Remarks to the March for Life by House Speaker John Boehner

ObamaCare Repeal Launched in Senate

G.O.P. SEN. TED CRUZ OPENED HIS FIRST TERM by keeping a promise to his Texas constituents: He filed a bill Jan. 29 to “repeal the Patient Protection & Affordable Care Act and the Health Care & Education Reconciliation Act of 2010 [ObamaCare] entirely.”

Signaling his determination, he presented 34 co-sponsors to S-177 upon introduction.

The need to dismantle and uproot ObamaCare becomes more apparent by the day, from a plethora of lawsuits seeking to overturn the ObamaCare abortifacient/sterilization mandate to private-sector alarm at the 13,000 pages of regulations issued by the Dept. of Health & Human Services (HHS) in December alone.

We encourage our readers to contact their US Senators (1-202/224-3121) to urge support for S-177 and to thank those who have signed on as co-sponsors, listed here (new Members in all caps): AL/Sessions, AZ/FLAKE & McCain, AR/Boozman, FL/Rubio, GA/Chambliss & Isakson, ID/Risch, IN/Coats, IA/Grassley, KS/Moran & Roberts, KY/McConnell & Paul, LA/Vitter, ME/Collins, MS/Cochran & Wicker, MO/Blunt, NE/FISCHER & Johanns, NH/Ayotte, NC/Burr, OH/Portman, OK/Coburn & Inhofe, PA/Toomey, SC/Scott, TN/Alexander, TX/Cornyn, UT/Hatch & Lee, WI/Johnson, and WY/Barrasso. All are Republicans.


Child Custody Protection Act Filed in Senate

THE CHILD CUSTODY PROTECTION ACT IS BACK in Congress, filed Jan. 22 in the Senate by Sen. Rob Portman (R-OH), together with six co-sponsors. S-32 has been referred to the Committee on Judiciary.

The measure would, in the words of its long title, “prohibit taking minors across state lines in circumvention of laws requiring the involvement of parents in abortion decisions.” Parental notice and/or consent laws are a major objective in the pro-life reform agenda and have been adopted in most states; S-32 would assist those states in enforcing their laws by making their cross-border evasion a federal crime. Violators would be subject to a fine and/or up to a year in prison, as well as exposure to civil litigation.

Sen. Portman’s bill is co-sponsored at introduction by GOP Senators Saxby Chambliss (GA), James Risch (ID), Mitch McConnell (KY), Thad Cochran (MS), Richard Burr (NC) and John Thune (SD).


March for Life Takes D.C.

THE ANNUAL MARCH FOR LIFE DREW MORE THAN 600,000 pro-life citizens to Washington, DC, on a cold Jan. 25 to peacefully petition their government to stop the slaughter of America’s preborn babies. The death toll in the 40 years since abortion decriminalization has now topped 55 million.

Though years ago many active pro-life citizens worried that their movement would diminish with age, the committed, active pro-life contingent has grown, and the movement is getting noticeably younger in both leadership and participants.

Students for Life of America, a campus-based network, is growing in numbers, in effectiveness and in stature within the pro-life community. Its March-related conference this year drew more than 2,000 students to Washington and was sold out weeks earlier than previously.

The March itself is now led by a young woman, Jeanne Monahan, who has initiated a media outreach which could eventually overcome media’s determined blackout of the event; indeed, the New York Times this year actually published a photo of the pro-life marchers; in the past, the principal Times coverage has focused on a handful of abortion advocates heckling the marchers.

One of the changes in the March rally was to limit the number of Congressmen given the platform to address the crowd. As a result, fewer Members of Congress attended the rally this year, but those who did appear in person were introduced and five spoke.

Members of Congress who appeared in person and were introduced were veteran GOP Representatives Tom Rooney (FL), Andy Harris (MD), Bob Latta (OH) and Glen Thompson (PA), and newly elected and installed Republican Representatives Ann Wagner (MO), Brad Wenstrup (OH) and Keith Rothfus (PA).

Appearing and speaking by video were House Speaker John Boehner (R-OH) and House Pro-Life Caucus co-chairman Rep. Dan Lipinski (D-IL).

Addressing the rally in person were, from the House, Rep. Chris Smith (R-NJ) and Rep. Diane Black (R-TN), and from the Senate, Sen. Rand Paul (R-KY).  Rep. Smith is co-chairman with Mr. Lipinski of the House Pro-Life Caucus, and Rep. Black is chief sponsor of HR-217, this year’s Title X Abortion Provider Prohibition Act, which would cut off federal “family planning” funds from Planned Parenthood and other abortionists.

We begin this week, at the close of this Life Advocacy Briefing, our tradition of publishing Congressional speeches we have transcribed from the March.


Judge Lifts Hammer from S.B.A. List

THE PRO-LIFE SUSAN B. ANTHONY LIST P.A.C. (S.B.A.) HAS BEEN RELIEVED of a burdensome lawsuit brought by a defeated Congressman accusing the group of defamation.

U.S. Circuit Judge Timothy S. Black of the Southern District of Ohio ruled Jan. 25, reports Michael Gryboski for the Christian Post, “that the SBA List was not guilty of defamation,” basing his ruling, Mr. Gryboski notes, “on First Amendment grounds.”

The lawsuit had been brought by then-Rep. Steven Driehaus (D-OH) just after he lost the 2010 election. SBA had posted ads accusing him of abandoning a pro-life stand by caving in to Pres. Obama on passage of his massive medical system takeover.

Mr. Driehaus’s attack on First Amendment rights was so egregious that the American Civil Liberties Union of Ohio sided with SBA via an amicus brief, which said, in part, quoted by the Christian Post, “‘The people have an absolute right to criticize their public officials; the government,’” reads the brief, “‘should not be the arbiter of true or false speech, and the best answer for bad speech is more speech.’”

A statement by SBA president Marjorie Dannenfelser indicated the group is pleased with the ruling but noted that Mr. Driehaus can still appeal the decision within 30 days and that the “‘protracted legal battle … was taxing on our resources and should never have happened in a country that enshrines free speech.’”


Another ObamaCare Mandate Win in 7th Circuit

THE CHICAGO-BASED 7th CIRCUIT COURT OF APPEALS ISSUED AN INJUNCTION last Wednesday to block enforcement of the ObamaCare contraception/sterilization coverage mandate in a suit brought by a Catholic-owned small business.

The Grote Co., plaintiff, which “employs 1,148 people at various locations,” reports retired Law Professor Howard Friedman on his ReligiousClause blog, “manufactures vehicle safety systems.”

The plaintiffs cited their Catholic beliefs in seeking relief from the insurance coverage mandate, and, reports Prof. Friedman, two of the three judges ruling in the case found “that plaintiffs’ free-exercise [of religion] rights are substantially burdened in violation of the Religious Freedom Restoration Act.”

Citing its own previous decision in Korte v. Sebelius, a similar case, reports Prof. Friedman, “the majority concluded that plaintiffs’ case here is stronger than in Korte because this is a self-insured plan and [because] plaintiffs have never covered contraceptive services for their employees.

“The majority added,” writes Prof. Friedman: “‘The government’s minimalist characterization of the burden continues to obscure the substance of the religious-liberty violation asserted here.’”


Time Running Out?

THE STATE OF MISSISSIPPI HAS SERVED NOTICE on the Jackson Women’s Health [sic] Organization (JWHO), the state’s only functioning abortuary, advising owner Diane Derzis that the Health Dept. plans to revoke its license; a hearing is first required, expected in about six weeks.

J.W.H.O. underwent a state inspection Jan. 16, five days after a six-month probationary period ended during which JWHO had pledged to seek admitting privileges for its abortionists at local hospitals. It appears the plan did not work out.

Attorneys for the abortion mill have run back to US District Judge Daniel P. Jordan III, asking him to renew a temporary injunction he earlier imposed to give the abortuary time to comply with the statute. That injunction has expired.

In its Jan. 24 notice, reports, citing Associated Press as source, the department “noted that none of the three physicians affiliated with the clinic have local hospital admitting privileges. It said one of the physicians previously had the privileges,” notes ONN/AP, “but those had expired July 27.” The admitting privileges requirement is a provision in a law signed in 2012 by Gov. Phil Bryant, a Republican who, reports ONN/AP, “has said repeatedly that he wants Mississippi to be abortion-free and that he’d shut the clinic if he had the power to do it. …

“The department also noted that the clinic had too few parking spaces available. State regulations require the clinic to be ‘located in an attractive setting with sufficient parking spaces provided.’” The JWHO parking lot capacity is fewer than 20 cars; the Jan. 24 notice gave the clinic 10 days to submit a plan for dealing with that violation.


Feds Tolerate Plan B via Vending Machine

THE FOOD & DRUG ADMINISTRATION (F.D.A.) IS TURNING A BLIND EYE to a circumvention of its rules governing dispensing of the Plan B “morning-after” abortifacient pill.

The scheme has been implemented, explains Sam Baker, writing for The Hill HealthWatch blog, through a vending machine which Shippensburg University has installed in the nurse’s office. Shippensburg is in rural southeast Pennsylvania, some 42 miles southwest of Harrisburg.

The F.D.A. “decided not to intervene,” reports Mr. Baker, “following a ‘politically motivated uproar.’” The blog writer did not explain who or what was behind the supposed “political” motivation.

Despite FDA regulations requiring a prescription for dispensing Plan B to adolescents under age 17, Shippensburg students “can obtain Plan B without waiting for an appointment by depositing $25 in the machine.” To us, that means, men can buy the pill in advance as an instrument of coercion, and girls under age 17 could buy one, too, with no interaction with a physician.

Plan B is a megadose of powerful hormonal contraception chemicals which are intended to be ingested after sexual intercourse; it is intended to block implantation of a newly conceived human being inside his or her mother’s womb, causing early death.

Without question, easy availability of the drug promotes sexual delinquency on campus, where most students are unmarried, promoting abortion as well as directly committing it.


Taking Every Opportunity

A COUNTY BOARD OF COMMISSIONERS IN MICHIGAN’s UPPER PENINSULA has blocked a $12,000 grant to Planned Parenthood, and it wasn’t even tax money that was at stake.

The county board of Grand Traverse County each year approves petitions for tribal fund disbursements from gambling operations of the local Ottawa and Chippewa Indians.

Planned Parenthood, in its grant application, claimed the funding “would go toward abstinence-based sex education,” writes Ben Johnson for But the county board did not buy the claim.

“Commissioner Jason Gillman,” writes Mr. Johnson, “said the abortion giant’s side industries only serve to ‘mask its evil intent. … The organization is designed,’” he said, quoted by Mr. Johnson, “‘to kill babies.’” Commissioner Gillman is identified in the report as a “Tea Party activist” who “has been at the cusp of Michigan politics in the past.”

The local Planned Parenthood affiliate “does not perform abortions,” reports LifeSiteNews, but “it provides women with ‘a referral list of healthcare providers in [the] area that offer abortion services.’”



Excerpt from Jan. 25, 2013, Fox News commentary by Charmaine Yoest PhD, CEO, Americans United for Life

… In the last two years alone, the legal team at Americans United for Life has helped enact nearly 50 new pro-life laws – that’s about one-third of the unprecedented number of pro-life laws enacted in that time period. In addition, we have a tremendous tidal wave of life-affirming legislation in the pipeline. Notably, over the past two years, we had 2,500 requests for our model legislation, and our legal team was at work in 39 states. … Where pro-life representation counts – at the state level closest to the grass roots – the momentum is building.

The abortion lobby today is a little like the old Soviet bloc that looked invincible – right up to the day it collapsed under the weight of its own stagnation. The old guard of the Kremlin were on the wrong side of history, science and the truth in much the same way that Big Abortion is today.


Remarks to the March for Life by House Speaker John Boehner

Jan. 25, 2013, by video

Hello, everyone, Thank you for being here at our nation’s capital on the fortieth anniversary of Roe versus Wade. Like all of you, it’s hard for me to think about a March for Life without Nellie Gray. For more than a generation Nellie was a leading voice for those who didn’t have one. And now, it’s up to us to be her voice, to commit ourselves to doing all we can to protect the sanctity of life. For the new Congress, that means bringing together a bipartisan pro-life majority and getting to work.

In accordance with the will of the people, we will again work to pass the No Taxpayer Funding for Abortion Act, formally codifying the Hyde Amendment. Of course defending life is much more than just voting the right way or saying the right things. It’s about promoting a culture of life. It’s about understanding that abortion is the defining human rights issue of our time. Because human life is not an economic or political commodity, and no government on earth has the right to treat it as such.

With all that at stake, it’s becoming more and more important for us to share the truth with our young people and encourage them to lock arms, speak out for Life, and help make abortion a relic of the past. Let that be one of our most fundamental roles of this year.

For now, let me thank all of you for what you do. May God bless your efforts, and may God bless the United States of America.